Today’s the day fans, GMs, coaches, and of course the players have all been looking forward to… it’s WNBA DRAFT DAY!
We’ve all witnessed a phenomenal NCAA Tournament with some amazing performances by several of the top draft prospects. Many eligible players took advantage of the additional year and opted to stay in school.
The names below reflect the final list of declared players.
Let’s take a look!
Dallas – Awak Kuier – Finland, 6’4” C
I know. Maybe not the name you were expecting to read first. The Wings are in need of some post play. Why not someone with the ability to stretch the floor and score at multiple levels? Kuier is an intriguing talent that will provide good size and mobility for the Wings, and she was recently named Best Young Player in the Italian Cup. She’s one of the youngest players in this draft with a phenomenally high ceiling.
Dallas – Charli Collier – Texas, 6’5” C
When Collier officially declared for the draft, she was immediately considered the top pick. That’s a lot of pressure for a player. She didn’t have the best performance in the tournament but is still a promising prospect with great size. While it’s probably safe to assume that she’ll still suit up in a Wings uniform, maybe starting her professional career without the added pressure of having to perform immediately as the top pick will be beneficial for her game. The spacing in the WNBA should allow her game to grow. The Wings need some help on the glass after finishing 10th in rebounding last season, so Collier will certainly provide help in that area as she stays in her home state of Texas.
Atlanta – Arella Guirantes – Rutgers, 5’11” G
Guirantes is a do-it-all type of player. Her college career ended with a first round exit in the tournament, but averaged an impressive stat line of 20.8 ppg, 6.1 rpg, 5.4 apg, 2 bpg, and 2.1 spg for the Scarlet Knights during her senior season. Guirantes will impact both ends of the court, and could provide quite a spark off the bench for Coach Nicki Collen.
Indiana – Aari McDonald – Arizona, 5’6” G
The PAC-12 Player and Defensive Player of the Year had herself quite a tournament run. With her performance, McDonald could possibly hear her name called early as a lottery pick. She’s an exciting player to watch, and provides a complete game on both ends of the court. A volume shooter, she averaged 24.8 ppg, 6.1 rpg, 2.6 apg, and 2.3 spg in her six tournament games for the Wildcats and came so close to closing her college career with a national championship. The Fever are in an interesting position with their roster makeup, and McDonald could provide a much needed spark.
Dallas – Jasmine Walker – Alabama, 6’3” F
Walker brings size, rebounding, and scoring, and she averaged 18 ppg and 8 rpg in her two NCAA tournament games. She can score in the post, off the dribble, and at an impressive near 40 percent clip from deep. She’d deliver reliable scoring for the Wings off the bench. After helping lead the Crimson Tide back to the NCAA Tournament for the first time in 22 years, will Walker provide the extra boost for Dallas?
New York – Rennia Davis – Tennessee, 6’2” G/F
As I’ve mentioned previously, Davis has guard skills in a forward’s body. She had an up and down senior season and shot a career low 26 percent from deep, but she finished strong for the Lady Vols with some stellar performances to end the season. She’s a physical player that could be a solid rotation piece for a healthy and retooled Liberty roster.
Los Angeles – Chelsea Dungee – Arkansas, 5’11” G
Dungee is another high-volume scorer. She understands how to draw and finish through contact as she was one of the nation’s leaders in attempts from the line. Will turnovers be an area of concern for her at the next level? Dungee will provide a shooter for the Sparks after the loss of some major production in free agency.
Chicago – Dana Evans – Louisville, 5’6” G
With Evans closing out her senior season averaging a career high 20.1 ppg, Coach Wade could turn to her to provide some relief in the backcourt. She protects the ball and is able to contribute offensively. The Chicago Sky are a team many have picked to win the WNBA Finals, so it will be interesting to see how much she’ll contribute right away.
Minnesota – Natasha Mack – Oklahoma State, 6’4” F/C
Mack averaged 20 ppg, 12.5 rpg, and 2.5 bpg in her NCAA Tournament debut. She’s still adding to her offensive skill set, but her immediate impact will be on the defensive end. Having a front row seat and opportunity to be mentored by a post tandem featuring Syvlia Fowles, Napheesa Collier, Damiris Dantas, and Natalie Achonwa will set her up for success as she grows professionally.
Los Angeles – Michaela Onyenwere – UCLA, 6’0” F
Onyenwere is a tough player and relentless on the glass for her size. She is also one of the best athletes in the draft class. Able to finish around the rim, she will look to improve her offensive game from deep as she develops. Onyenwere has the ability to defend multiple positions, which would help her score some valuable minutes on Coach Fisher’s squad.
Seattle – Shyla Heal – Australia, 5’6” G
Heal is another young player with international pro experience. Seattle is no stranger to players from Australia, and Heal could serve as the latest draftee from Down Under to suit up in the Emerald City. She averaged 25 ppg and over 7 apg for the Townsville Fire of the WNBL.
Las Vegas – DiJonai Carrington – Baylor, 5’11” G
Carrington is another player that improved her stock during the NCAA Tournament, averaging 18 ppg, 6.25 rpg, and 2.75 spg across four games. She’s an experienced player and can impact the game on both ends of the floor. The Aces’ lack of offensive production from the bench in the 2020 WNBA Finals was a huge blow, and Carrington could step in and fill a similar role like she did for Kim Mulkey’s Baylor Bears.
Other notable potential picks: Kysre Gondrezick (West Virginia), Tiana Mangakahia (Syracuse), Lindsey Pulliam (Northwestern), Destiny Slocum (Arkansas), Unique Thompson (Auburn), Janelle Bailey (North Carolina), N’dea Jones (Texas A&M), and Kiana Williams (Stanford)