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Title: Official WNBA topic: 2020 WNBA Draft time.
Post by: BeautifulShy on January 18, 2020, 05:17:59 PM
Okay so I figured the best place to start with this topic is to give a general overview of all 12 teams in the WNBA and their best players.  This will be in alphabetical order.  So we start with the Atlanta Dream first.

The Atlanta Dream is a mix of young upcomers and vet leadership.  The main vet for the Dream is Renee Montgomery as she has been in the league for 10 seasons. She has been a steading force for the Dream and the young roster who has lots of good young players, Elizabeth Williams and Britney Sykes being two of them.  Willams is the center for the Dream and is a defense player and great rebounder.  In one game she had 20 points, 8 rebounds and 8 blocks in a game this past season. Sykes just finished her 2nd year in the league and this past season she has reached 1,000 career points, she tied for most points in a quarter with 22, (Diana Taurasi set the record in 2006) and she led the Dream in assists on eight different occasions this past season.   https://www.youtube.com/c/AtlantaDream

Next up is the Chicago Sky, Their main star is their point guard in Courtney Vandersloot who has been in the league for 8 years. She has had 11.2 points, 9.1 assists, 4.3 rebounds per game this past season.  When she is going the whole team functions better and she tends to pass to Diamond Deshields who just finished her 1st season in the league and is already winning awards.  She won the WNBA Skills Challenge and was named an All-Star.  This past season she has scored 20+ points nine times of the 34 games she played.
https://www.youtube.com/user/ChicagoSkyBasketball

The Connecticut Sun are a very young team and have only 3 players who have at least 6 years in the league.  One of those 3 players is Shekinna Stricklen. She is more of a 3 and D type of player and she has 287 career three pointers and her overall career stats are 1,520 points, 520 rebounds, 165 assists and 142 steals thus far.
https://www.youtube.com/ConnecticutSun

Deep in the heart of Texas is the Dallas Wings and their main playmaker is Skylar Diggins-Smith. This past season she has averaged 17.9 points a game, 6.2 assists and 1.4 steals.  She has won multiple awards in her time in the league a few of those include, All WNBA First Team(2017), All-Star reserve in 2017, starter for an All-Star in 2014, Most Improved Player(2014) and All Rookie Team(2013).  https://twitter.com/DallasWings

The Indiana Fever is possibly the youngest team in the league and there is only one player on their roster who has more than six years in the league and that is 13 year vet Candice Dupree who has always averaged double digit points throughout her whole career. Her lowest point total average is 11.3 in 2016 and her highest point average is 16.5 in 2007. She was the first player ever drafted by the Chicago Sky in their history with the 6th pick in the 2006 draft. She is a WNBA champ with the Phoenix Mercury in 2014. She ranks 8th in WNBA history in points and rebounds. She has 66 career double doubles, 13 consecutive years scoring in double figures. Finally she has played in 32 or more of a possible 34 games each season in 12 of 13 WNBA seasons.
 https://www.youtube.com/c/IndianaFever

Las Vegas Aces is one of the oldest teams in the league as far as a franchise goes. They started off as the Utah Starzz in 1997. One of the inaugural 8 teams in the WNBA. They later became the San Antonio Silver Stars in 2003. They became the Las Vegas Aces in the 2018 season.
Here is a history of the Utah Starzz/ San Antonio Silver Stars/Las Vegas Aces in the WNBA draft.  https://aces.wnba.com/aces-history-feeling-a-draft/    As to the future of the Aces it is bright with the draft of the Kelsey Plum with the number 1 overall pick in the 2018 draft. In the last season she was second on the team in assists(Jackie Young).
She finished the post season second on the team in points(15.2), first in assists(7.8 ), fourth in rebounds(4.8 ), first in 3 point percentage(.529) and fourth in field goal percentage(.492).   The other young star on the Aces is Ji-Su Park who has played two seasons.  Her numbers are slightly deceptive as she has played internationally for the KB Stars from South Korea in 3 seasons in the WKBL(South Korean League). In her time overseas she has averaged 12.9 points, .509 field goal average, 68.3 percent from the free throw line and 1066 rebounds in 3 years of play while in South Korea.  https://twitter.com/lvaces

Next up is The LA Sparks.  Like most LA professional basketball teams they have a history of championships. The LA Sparks have three championships in league history. (2001,2002 and 2016). Magic Johnson is the main name under the ownership label of Sparks LA LLC. Derrick Fisher is the Head Coach of the team.    Now the Sparks main star is Candace Parker and she has picked up where Lisa Leslie left off for the Spark. She mainly does her damage in 3 ways, scoring, rebounds and from beyond the 3 point line.  17.0 points overall her career, 8.5 rebounds and 33.3 from three, respectfully.   She also has two sisters on the same team.  Chiney and Nneka Ogwumike. Nneka has been with the Spark her whole career but Chiney just joined the team last season.  As a duo they have these stats this past season. 25.7 points, 14.6 rebounds, 2.6 assists, 2.8 steals and 1.1 blocks.     https://www.youtube.com/user/TheLosAngelesSparks/

Up in the Midwest is the Minnesota Lynx and have won 2 WNBA championships since 2015. In 2015 and 2017. They have 4 championships overall.  A big part of those championship teams is Sylvia Fowles.  She was the WNBA Finals MVP both years and she was the regular season MVP in 2017. She is a 3 time defensive player of the year, She has been chosen to the ALL WNBA first team 3 times and the second team 3 times. (2010, 2013, 2017) (2011,2012, and 2016) respectfully. Also she has 3 Gold Olympic medals and is the career leader in field goal percentage in the history of the WNBA with 59.0%.  She is a major part of the success of the Lynx.  http://www.youtube.com/MinnesotaLynx

The New York Liberty was one of the first 8 teams in the league.  Players such as Rebecca Lobo, Teresa Weatherspoon, Becky Hammon, and Leilani Mitchell come to mind when one thinks of the Liberty.  They have played in the WNBA Finals 4 times, the most in the league without a championship.  As one of the only teams from the inaugural 8 teams to still have the same ownership they have lots of history in the league.  https://liberty.wnba.com/6158-2/  While their past is historic they future is so bright.  Brittany Boyd was the Liberty's first round pick in 2015 with the 9th pick and she was a member of the WNBA All Rookie Team in 2015. Led all rookies in steals( 1.1) and 6th in scoring amongst first year players (6.6).  Amanda Zahui B is the other young player which is lifting up the Liberty.  Last season she had 8.6 points,1.3 blocks, 1 steal and 6.3 rebounds per game.  https://twitter.com/nyliberty

Finally to the team I watched the first few years when I moved to Phoenix, the Phoenix Mercury.  They have the 2 best players in the league currently.  Diana Taurasi and Britney Griner.  Many consider Diana Taurisi to be the greatest player in WNBA history.  She is a 3 time WNBA champion, 4 time Olympic gold medalist(One of 5 athletes with 4 gold medals, no one has 5 gold medals), 6 time EuroLeague champ, 2 time WNBA Finals MVP, 10 time All WNBA First Team- most in WNBA history.
 Finally she has the Phoenix Mercury franchise leader in 16 catagories,  seasons, games played, games started, minutes played, points scored, scoring average, field goals made, field goal attempts, 3-pointers, 3-point attempts, free throws made, free throw attempts, defensive rebounds, assists, steals and championships.   Not to be out shined is Britney Griner who is one of the best players in Mercury history.  There is too much to gush about with Brittney Griner so I will let you peruse her player page. https://www.wnba.com/player/brittney-griner/#/career She is also openly a lesbian and is a great advocate for the LGBTQIA+ community and the Mercury support her.   https://www.youtube.com/user/PhoenixMercuryVideos

Next up is the Seattle Storm. They have the player with the most seasons in the WNBA among active players. Sue Bird. She has played 18 seasons. All with the Storm. She was their #1 draft pick in 2002.  She is often talked with Diana Taurasi as one of the greatest players in league history. Every year she has played she has had at least 10 points a game in her career. She is also a 38.9% 3 point shooter in her career.   The team overall have a non profit called Storm Cares which spotlights all kind of businesses in the Pacific Northwest that are doing good.  http://www.seattlestormbasketball.com/stormcares/stormunity/community-spotlight/  Here is their main YT channel. https://www.youtube.com/user/SeattleStormOfficial/

Finally the current WNBA Champions, the Washington Mystic.  The Mystic are on the rise.  Elena Delle Donne is considered to be the next GOAT in the league once Diana Tarasi retires.  There is also lots of young players around her to grow while she is still playing her best such as Kristi Toliver, LaToya Sanders, Tianna Hawkins and Arial Atkins.  The Mystics look to continue to play their best and continue to win championships. 

Next post will go over the basics of the WNBA season and the playoff structure and when is the 2020 WNBA draft. Finally the 3rd post will go over any changes to the upcoming WNBA season.   

You can post after I put in those extra posts for later editing.   








Title: Re: Official WNBA topic: Mystics win the 2019 WNBA championship
Post by: BeautifulShy on January 18, 2020, 05:18:34 PM
Basics of WNBA

The WNBA will be starting its 23rd year this upcoming season.  The league has expanded has expanded from having 8 teams in 1997 to having 12 in its current iteration.  The season starts with the WNBA draft, then training camps, then preseason, then a day before the new WNBA season starts there is roster cuts to 12 players. Next the season starts and this is typically in mid May and runs till mid August.  In June there is Pride Month and most teams have a game night for it. In late July there is the trade deadline and then a few days thereafter is the WNBA All-Star game.  Then the playoffs happen and then the WNBA Finals happen in September.   

Now the playoffs in the WNBA is pretty unique from what I have found so let me lay things out.

*The top eight teams regardless of conference qualify for the postseason
*The number of playoff rounds has increased from three to four
*Teams will be re-seeded after each postseason round.
*The first and second rounds are single elimination.  In the first round, the No. 5 seed hosts the No. 8 seed and the No. 6 seed hosts the No. 7 seed.  In the second round, the No. 3 seed hosts the lowest-seeded first-round winner and the No. 4 seed hosts the other first-round winner.
*The semifinals feature a best-of-five format, with the No. 1 overall seed playing the lowest remaining seed and the No. 2 overall seed meeting the remaining team.  The Nos. 1 and 2 seeds will host Games 1, 2 and 5, and the lower-seeded teams will host Games 3 and 4 in their respective series.  The WNBA Finals remain best-of-five and follow the same 2-2-1 format.
 
This is what the 2019 WNBA playoffs looked like for those that visualize with pictures.    https://www.wnba.com/wnba-playoffs-2019/

As to the 2020 WNBA Draft it will take place on April 12th 2020 at 8pm in New York City.
This is a list of the incoming players into the draft and their rankings.  https://www.draftsite.com/wnba/mock-draft/2020/

As you can see there is only 12 picks per round and a total of 3 rounds. The draft order is based on record so the Liberty have the 1st pick and the Mystics have the 12th pick. Picks can be traded just like in the NBA so some teams might have multiple draft picks in a draft.
Title: Re: Official WNBA topic: Mystics win the 2019 WNBA championship
Post by: BeautifulShy on January 18, 2020, 05:19:01 PM
Any changes for the 2020 WNBA season.

There is a new Collective Bargaining Agreement this year and the newly established CBA will last 8 years.  Here is a few more important things therein.

– Significant Increases to Player Cash Compensation and Benefits –
– Cash Compensation Triples to More Than Half a Million Dollars for Top Players –
– Enhanced Travel Standards; Expanded Career Development Opportunities; New Child Care, Maternity and Progressive Family Planning Benefits –
– League Launches ‘WNBA Changemakers’ Partnership Platform to Enhance Player Experience and Drive Business Transformation – 

You can read in full the new CBA here. https://www.wnba.com/news/wnba-and-wnbpa-reach-tentative-agreement-on-groundbreaking-eight-year-collective-bargaining-agreement/

This year there will be 36 regular season games up from 34 last season.    There is also going to be a "Commissioner’s Cup" tournament, expanded national game broadcasts on ABC. 

Commissioners Cup
The new Commissioner’s Cup will consist of designating a portion of regular-season games – 10 games per team – as counting towards Cup play. The team from each conference with the top record in designated “Cup games” will then compete for The Commissioner Cup title and a special prize pool. Cup games will be the first home game and first road game each team plays against its five conference rivals, all completed from May 15 – July 10 before the WNBA takes a monthlong break while many WNBA players participate in the 2020 Summer Olympics in Japan, including the USA Basketball Women’s National Team, which will be competing for its seventh consecutive gold medal.

More ESPN games
ESPN networks will present 17 regular-season telecasts, including five games on ABC – up from three last season. ESPN will televise two regular-season games and ESPN2 will air 10. ESPN networks will also present up to 19 playoff games. All ESPN telecasts during the regular season and postseason will stream live on the ESPN app. 

You can read all about the above in more detail and all the new ESPN/ESPN2/ABC telecasts over here.  https://www.wnba.com/news/2020-wnba-season-to-feature-inaugural-commissioners-cup-expanded-36-game-schedule-for-teams-and-more-abc-games/
Title: Re: Official WNBA topic: Mystics win the 2019 WNBA championship
Post by: BeautifulShy on January 19, 2020, 10:54:16 AM
I think that should do it.   I am super excited for next season coming up and I get to see the Mercury play and it is going to be so much fun to see in person.
Title: Re: Official WNBA topic: Mystics win the 2019 WNBA championship
Post by: ejamer on January 19, 2020, 02:27:25 PM
How much longer do you think Diana Taurasi will play?  She's been around for a long time already, and is nearing 40. Definitely an hall of fame player, but you have to figure she's at the very tail end of her amazing career...
 You'll still be in for a show though. Britney Griner is an absolute beast (in a complimentary way) and a fierce competitor.
Title: Re: Official WNBA topic: Mystics win the 2019 WNBA championship
Post by: BeautifulShy on January 19, 2020, 02:51:51 PM
I think she will play out her current contract which will conclude at the end of the 2020 season.  The Mercury have Griner, Mitchell and Sophie Cunningham to help with the heavy lifting while Taurasi plays off ball and does what she does best, score.

Griner is a joy to watch she is one of my fave players in the league.
Title: Re: Official WNBA topic: Mystics win the 2019 WNBA championship
Post by: nickmitch on January 20, 2020, 02:40:13 PM
That new CBA sounds pretty great for the players.  There's still a ways to go in terms of equity with the NBA, but it looks like a lot of progress is being made.

The Commissioner's Cup sounds like a testing ground for what Silver was talking about doing in the NBA.  I'm still weary on it, but it'll be interesting to see how it plays out.
Title: Re: Official WNBA topic: Mystics win the 2019 WNBA championship
Post by: BeautifulShy on January 20, 2020, 03:14:43 PM
That new CBA sounds pretty great for the players.  There's still a ways to go in terms of equity with the NBA, but it looks like a lot of progress is being made.

The Commissioner's Cup sounds like a testing ground for what Silver was talking about doing in the NBA.  I'm still weary on it, but it'll be interesting to see how it plays out.
Yeah a lot of the talk last season was about equitable pay and making sure to care for the star players like Britney Griner and DDD. I am happy the new CBA is bringing these sort of things to the forefront to woman's basketball.   
Title: Re: Official WNBA topic: Mystics win the 2019 WNBA championship
Post by: ejamer on January 20, 2020, 07:38:34 PM
...
The Commissioner's Cup sounds like a testing ground for what Silver was talking about doing in the NBA.  I'm still weary on it, but it'll be interesting to see how it plays out.

I like this idea a lot for WNBA, and think (because of the way the scheduling works, and because there are fewer games overall) it's a better fit here than in the existing NBA schedule. Hopefully it will also help bring some attention to the league, because they are doing something different and getting an interesting (hopefully) in-season tournament to put some focus on a couple of the teams.

That said, will it just be the same teams playing here as in the finals? Or because of the way teams have to qualify, maybe not? Does it even matter? Very curious to see how the whole thing plays out. I do like the idea of giving a select set of games extra weight and having a marquee matchup (with prize money!) before the season ends.
Title: Re: Official WNBA topic: Mystics win the 2019 WNBA championship
Post by: nickmitch on January 20, 2020, 08:41:05 PM
That new CBA sounds pretty great for the players.  There's still a ways to go in terms of equity with the NBA, but it looks like a lot of progress is being made.

The Commissioner's Cup sounds like a testing ground for what Silver was talking about doing in the NBA.  I'm still weary on it, but it'll be interesting to see how it plays out.
Yeah a lot of the talk last season was about equitable pay and making sure to care for the star players like Britney Griner and DDD. I am happy the new CBA is bringing these sort of things to the forefront to woman's basketball.   

Agreed!

...
The Commissioner's Cup sounds like a testing ground for what Silver was talking about doing in the NBA.  I'm still weary on it, but it'll be interesting to see how it plays out.

I like this idea a lot for WNBA, and think (because of the way the scheduling works, and because there are fewer games overall) it's a better fit here than in the existing NBA schedule. Hopefully it will also help bring some attention to the league, because they are doing something different and getting an interesting (hopefully) in-season tournament to put some focus on a couple of the teams.

That said, will it just be the same teams playing here as in the finals? Or because of the way teams have to qualify, maybe not? Does it even matter? Very curious to see how the whole thing plays out. I do like the idea of giving a select set of games extra weight and having a marquee matchup (with prize money!) before the season ends.

The shorter schedule lends itself to something like this, I think.  As for it being a finals preview, could go either way.  Teams may need to decide between resting or advancing in the mid-season tourney.  BUT because it'd be one game and not a series, there's more that's up to chance (e.g., players having off games, getting into foul trouble, etc.).
Title: Re: Official WNBA topic: Mystics win the 2019 WNBA championship
Post by: BeautifulShy on January 20, 2020, 10:24:31 PM
Quote from ejamer
Quote
That said, will it just be the same teams playing here as in the finals? Or because of the way teams have to qualify, maybe not? Does it even matter? Very curious to see how the whole thing plays out. I do like the idea of giving a select set of games extra weight and having a marquee matchup (with prize money!) before the season ends.

So after rereading the press release I think this is what it is saying...  Each team in the WNBA will play 10 games between May 15th and July 10th and those games will go towards points to be the top team in the Commissioner's Cup and whichever 2 top teams have the most wins within those 10 games of play will play each other for the Commisioner's Cup title.     

So it really could come down to who is healthy at the start of the season and if there is any upsets so there could be lots of different teams hoping to be one of the two teams in the Commisioner's Cup.
Title: Re: Official WNBA topic: Mystics win the 2019 WNBA championship
Post by: ejamer on January 21, 2020, 06:32:51 AM
Yeah - that's how I understand it too. 

Strong teams that make the finals usually win a lot of games during the season, so seem to have a good chance be represented in this type of tournament... but I think that's ok, as having a rematch in the finals seems pretty interesting anyway. There will also be a bit more randomness since you take 2 games (first home and away) against each team in your conference, so an off night here or there could be enough to tip the balance when you don't have a full series to help ensure the best team comes out on top.
Title: Re: Official WNBA topic: Mystics win the 2019 WNBA championship
Post by: BeautifulShy on January 24, 2020, 10:15:47 AM
I actually like it since the Commissioner's Cup would bring a different type of play to the game and it also adds something for fans to keep an eye out for.
Title: Re: Official WNBA topic: Mystics win the 2019 WNBA championship
Post by: BeautifulShy on January 30, 2020, 06:26:47 PM
New WNBA schedule came out today.  https://www.wnba.com/schedule/
May 15th is the 1st day of the season and September 20th is the last. 

I am excited for the season and this new take on the WNBA.   
Title: Re: Official WNBA topic: Mystics win the 2019 WNBA championship
Post by: BeautifulShy on February 11, 2020, 12:49:47 PM
We have our first trade of the season.

Dewanna Bonner for 3 first round picks. Dewanna Bonner goes to the Connecticut Sun and her first new team since she was drafted by the Phoenix Mercury many years ago.  Mercury looks like they are building for the future.
Title: Re: Official WNBA topic: Mystics win the 2019 WNBA championship
Post by: BeautifulShy on April 17, 2020, 01:58:11 PM
Bumping this topic since the WNBA is holding their draft virtually. 

The WNBA draft will be able to be watched on ESPN starting at 4pm PST/7PM EST so about 2 hours from now. It will be 3 rounds and run for about 2 hours.    https://www.wnba.com/wnba-draft-2020/#/panel2-1     the 10th pick of 12 in the 1st round, Pick 6th of 12 in the 2nd round and the 5th pick in the 3rd round.   The other team I am looking at is the LA Sparks.  Sparks have a 2nd round pick at 8 and a third round pick of 10.   So 36 players are drafted in total.    It should be interesting to watch.
Title: Re: Official WNBA topic: 2020 WNBA Draft time.
Post by: BeautifulShy on April 17, 2020, 05:50:28 PM
So the 2020 WNBA Draft just finished and it went pretty quickly.   

Here is the full draft list.  https://www.wnba.com/wnba-draft-2020/#/panel2-1
Title: Re: Official WNBA topic: 2020 WNBA Draft time.
Post by: BeautifulShy on April 17, 2020, 07:22:11 PM
One other thing that I saw was that the WNBA just announced the Kobe and Gigi Bryant WNBA Advocacy Award.   Basically it is an award that is for someone or group who has fought for the visibility, perception and advancement of the WNBA at all levels. The first recipient will be announced at the 2021 NBA All-Star game.