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A revised agreement for a new Seattle sports arena that was unveiled this week got people talking again about the future of KeyArena. As part of the amended deal with lead investor Chris Hansen, the city negotiated $7 million for upgrades to KeyArena and a study about its future.

That future may not include the Seattle Storm, according to KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel.

Jose Luis Magana / AP Photo

The success of the Seattle Storm has led to some pretty high-profile women's basketball events being held in the city. One of them is Saturday night at KeyArena.

The U.S. Women's National team will play the Chinese Women's National team in an exhibition game at 7:30 p.m. KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says this is a big deal for fans of women's basketball and for the city.

Marcio Jose Sanchez / AP Photo

The U.S. Women’s National Basketball team will play a special exhibition game on Saturday night at KeyArena in Seattle against the Chinese Women’s National basketball team. Current Seattle Storm point guard Sue Bird and former Storm player Swin Cash will play for the U.S. team.

Ted S. Warren / AP Photo

There were some bright spots in the local sports scene in 2011. But not many. Find out what KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel named as the high points and low points of the year.

Elaine Thompson / AP Photo

They may have won it all in 2010, but this year the Seattle Storm reverted back to their old habit of exiting the playoffs in the first round. They've done it six out of the last seven years.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says injuries and exhaustion were big factors.

Elaine Thompson / AP Photo

What a difference a year makes. They were the WNBA champs in 2010, but the Seattle Storm is already out of this year's playoffs. They were eliminated in the first round by the Phoenix Mercury Monday night at KeyArena.

Elaine Thompson / AP

"Your star player will be out for the rest of the season, and maybe the playoffs. Now ... SMILE!"

That was pretty much the scenario for members of the Seattle Storm this week when the 2010 WNBA champions were honored by President Obama at the White House.

As they were taking photos in the White House Rose Garden, most of the team learned that three-time WNBA MVP Lauren Jackson – "the heart and soul of the Storm," according to KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel – was to have hip surgery. She's expected to be out up to three months.

Pablo Martinez Monsivais / AP

On the same day the members of the Seattle Storm were honored by President Obama at the White House, the ladies learned that teammate and three-time WNBA MVP Lauren Jackson is having hip surgery today and will be out up to 12 weeks.

It's a blow to the team whose season has not gotten off to a great start. They were WNBA champions just a year ago. Can the Storm claim the title again this year – without a lot of help from Lauren Jackson?

Hear KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel's take on that tomorrow morning at 5:35 and 7:35 on KPLU. And you'll find a blog of our conversation right here tomorrow morning as well. 

photo courtesy of the Seattle Storm

President Barack Obama welcomed the Seattle Storm to the White House Rose Garden today. Obama said the 2010 WNBA champions set a good example for young girls with big dreams. The President is a basketball fan and his daughters, Malia and Sasha, also like to shoot hoops.

Ted S. Warren / AP

What would you say was the top Seattle sports story of 2010?   Sports commentator Art Thiel has come up with his top five, and he shared them with KPLU’s Kirsten Kendrick.

Seattle Storm (stormbasketball.com)

The Seattle Storm host Atlanta at KeyArena this evening in Game 2 of their best-of-five series for the WNBA title, the top rung in women's basketball. The Storm won Sunday's first game. When the team flies to Atlanta for Game 3, some of their most vocal fans plan to be there.