WNBA Predictions/Thoughts:

bballnut90

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Gotta hand it to the league for working their tail off to come up with a solution that most players seem somewhat comfortable with. We have a very unusual season ahead, with only 22 games, a lot of key players sitting out and a lot of older players returning who dealt with injuries a year ago. Here's my guess for standings and general awards:

Standings:
1. Seattle-they strung together a very respectable 6th place finish last year without Bird and Stewart, plus Loyd never seemed fully healthy. All 3 are back, but the big question is can they return to their stellar 2018 form with Stewart coming off an Achilles tear and Bird turning 40 this season. Even if those 2 aren't quite as good as they were in 2018, Howard blossomed into an All-WNBA player a year ago, Canada improved steadily over the season along with Mercedes Russell. They have a nice combination of youth and experience that should serve them well this year.

2. Las Vegas-this might be a little aggressive putting them at 2, but I think this is a breakout year given the lineup they have. A'ja Wilson does best being the only post on the floor and should flourish like she did as a rookie not having to share the paint with Cambage. Hamby pairs excellently with her and has turned into a very good PF. Vegas has a fantastic trio of wings too in Angel McCoughtry, Kayla McBride and possibly Jackie Young if Bill moves her off the ball. She had an underwhelming rookie campaign, but with more experience under her belt I think we'll see more of the ND Jackie Young than the rookie version.

3. Chicago-another team that looks loaded and primed to make a legitimate run for the title. Diamond Deshields might be the best open court player in the league and is a more consistent jumpshot away from becoming an MVP candidate. Sloot is the best passer in the league, Quigley one of the best shooters. They have strong backup guards in Gabby Williams and Kahleah Copper. Front court is the cause for concern. Dolson, Parker and Lavender make for a solid trio but none of them are stalwart defenders or particularly athletic. I think they will likely struggle defending top posts in the league. They did bring in some nice athletic bigs in Stevens and Hebard, both have their pros and cons. Stevens appears to like playing on the wing more than inside, and Hebard isn't a top tier defender despite having great quickness and good size at 6-4. I think the season likely hinges on Deshields ability to rise to stardom and if they can slow down opposing bigs.

4. Phoenix-they have a 3 headed monster in Griner/Diggins-Smith/Taurasi, but it's pretty slim pickings after that. Lots of filler players like Hartley, Walker-Kimbrough, and Vaughn who can contribute but have histories of inconsistency. They need more than those 3 to be in competition for a title, so someone has to rise to the occasion. Of those 3, question marks exist, too. DT is coming off a season of sitting out with injury and is 38 years old. Griner's passion, focus, and general attitude has been a big question mark the last few years, and SDS is a ball dominant point guard. All 3 like the ball in their hands, so I think it'll be a bit of an adjustment early. This team is more of a wild card IMO...they could be in the title mix or a 7/8 seed IMO.

5. LA-I might be underrating LA, but I'm just not "wowed" by their roster considering trades and sit outs. Gray and Nneka have proven to be consistent top level players. Parker never seemed like herself last year, whether it's age or decline in play is unknown at this point. They have athletic wings in Sykes/Williams, but no one else on the roster stands out to me much. Players like TRP, Wiese, R. Gray, Cooper and Augustus could elevate their play but I think they're going to be pretty out manned by a lot of opposing benches. Having one of Chiney, Kalani Brown or Vadeeva would've made a big difference. If Parker returns to pre-2019 form, LA is a title threat. If not, I don't think they'll be great.

6. Connecticut-I thought the Sun last season vastly overachieved and the team was better than the sum of its parts. The actual roster looks pretty darn different this season with Courtney Williams, JJ, and Stricklen all gone. I also think they lack quality size and have a plethora of not very efficient scorers in Jasmine Thomas, Bonner and January. Alyssa Thomas will need to take on a prominent role once again, and I think KML needs to elevate her play to replace Stricklen as a 3pt bomber. I can't see this team being nearly as good without JJ/Williams, but if Bonner can play efficiently, Connecticut can compete

7. Indiana-possibly a bold pick, but they have a very good, young roster that I think makes big improvements this year if players like Kelsey Mitchell and McCowan continue to improve. Big T was a monster at the end of last season and likely continues to build off of that. Everyone else is back, including Victoria Vivians who was stellar as a rookie. They have good vets in Dupree/Wheeler, but I think Kelsey Mitchell is the player who makes or breaks this team. If she can score more efficiently, they'll be incredibly difficult to match up with. Cox is also a great pick at 3, although my guess is she plays more of a backup role this year behind McCowan/Achonwa.

8. Washington-perhaps a bit low for the defending champs, but this just straight up is a VERY different team. Cloud, EDD, and Toliver are all gone. The team's success hinges largely on Meesseman, Atkins, and how well Mitchell incorporates as the new PG. Powers had a very good year last season too and is back. I think they'll look somewhat like Seattle did last year, where a lot of different faces elevate their play in the absence of stars. They can make the playoffs but I just can't see them being a deep playoff threat unless Meesseman puts together an MVP type of season and Atkins flourishes in a larger role.

9. Minnesota-I think they have a shot to sneak into the playoffs once again. Collier likely takes on a bigger scoring role this year without Sims in the lineup, as she's likely the face of the franchise going forward. Fowles is a very consistent post despite numbers dipping last year. After that it's slim though. Lexie Brown is a quality guard who likely starts in her 3rd year. Karima CK is another wild card who was excellent in 2017 but basically sat out the last 2 years with injuries. The combination of coaching, experience and Fowles/Collier gives them a shot to make the playoffs.

10. Dallas-I could see this team finishing as high is 4th or 5th if everything falls into place, or I could see them finishing 11th. They are incredibly young, but they look very good on paper. A lot has to go right though and I don't think it fully will. Jefferson was very very good as a rookie but hasn't been healthy since. Arike was one of the top players in the league the 2nd half of last season, but will shift over to playing off the ball more which likely will have some growing pains to work through. Players like Sabally/Alarie are very intriguing picks but I'm not sure either will light it up from day 1. Add in another intriguing player in KLS, but she barely played as a rookie. Post play is also a major issue, with Ndour being the likely starter and I just don't see the combination of her, Harrison and Gustafson competing well inside. Thornton/Gray are known commodities, and I think it's a relatively safe assumption that Harris will be a solid backup PG as a rookie even if she doesn't make a huge impact. If players flourish in new roles and stay healthy, this team could be very dangerous. If not, it may be a long season.

11. Atlanta-very likely a growing season for Atlanta as they will look completely different this upcoming year. They have some good players but no one who likes like a true star. Courtney Williams could be that star, so could Chennedy Carter, but I don't see the overall talent or depth to compete for a playoff spot here.

12. New York-just being frank, this roster looks pretty awful outside of Ionescu and Nurse. The team has 7 rookies on the roster, with only a couple of them being true WNBA caliber players IMO. Not all sold on Jazmine Jones, Shook, Holmes or Odom making any impact. Stokes and Zahui B I don't see as starter material posts. Walker I like as a pick but she's behind the curve right now due to covid. I think it'll be a long year for NY.


Awards:
MVP: A'ja Wilson (toss up between her and Stewart)
ROY: Satou Sabally (I think Ionescu struggles with a weak lineup)
COY: James Wade

All WNBA:

1st Team:

Vandersloot
Taurasi
Stewart
Wilson
Meesseman

2nd Team:
Deshields
Gray
Griner
Howard
Nneka

All Rookie Team:
Ionescu
Sabally
Carter
Hebard
Harris
 
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eebmg

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Since I cant make the travel to UConn games, at least I will enjoy seeing a good college team at Barclays in years to come. :oops:
 
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I would be shocked if NYC or Atlanta weren't in the bottom 4 of the league given their rosters. My thought are totally dependent on these rosters being 100% healthy and in the shape they are at the moment:

Tier 1
Seattle
Las Vegas
Los Angeles

These seem to be the best bets to finish towards the top of the league standings. Seattle could have in place all the pieces which won them a title in 2018 and players who adjusted to life without Stewart last year. No Cambage may be addition by subtraction but it leaves little room for error down low. If Angel can put up good numbers they will be a threat. LA will miss Chiney for depth but Gray, Nneka, Parker are three great ones they just need more offense outside.

Tier 2
Chicago
Phoenix
Connecticut
Washington

Chicago should be better if Stevens comes back healthy and Hebard performs well. Sloot, Quigley and Deshields are legit. Phoenix doesn't have much outside of their own big 3 but I never bet against Taurasi. If she still has gas in the tank they are a tough loss. The two finalists, Connecticut and Washington have a lot of gaps to fill but both are well coached and still have some firepower. They likely won't make the finals again but I predict both will be in the playoffs.

Tier 4
Minnesota
Dallas
Indiana

These three all have the potential to make the playoffs if their youth can deliver. All have exciting young pieces and rosters with some gaps that make it tough to give them an edge over some of the more experienced and complete teams.

Tier 5
Atlanta
New York

Both teams will need to get young players experience this season and look at where they need to fill in holes for the next draft class and free agent period.


These are strictly my thoughs and gosh knows I've been wrong plenty of times. Also there will certainly be positive Covid cases and injuries that impact the order of finish.
 
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bballnut90

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Why not?

Both are on teams that are likely going to finish in the top 4-5 teams, Collier is not. Howard is coming off an 1st Team All-WNBA season and Nneka made 2nd team last year. Neither has shown any signs of slowing down. Collier would need to drastically improve her production to elevate up to an All-WNBA team, especially being a forward which is consistently the most difficult position to beat out others for an All-WNBA spot.
 

bballnut90

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Gotta hand it to the league for working their tail off to come up with a solution that most players seem somewhat comfortable with. We have a very unusual season ahead, with only 22 games, a lot of key players sitting out and a lot of older players returning who dealt with injuries a year ago. Here's my guess for standings and general awards:

Standings:
1. Seattle-they strung together a very respectable 6th place finish last year without Bird and Stewart, plus Loyd never seemed fully healthy. All 3 are back, but the big question is can they return to their stellar 2018 form with Stewart coming off an Achilles tear and Bird turning 40 this season. Even if those 2 aren't quite as good as they were in 2018, Howard blossomed into an All-WNBA player a year ago, Canada improved steadily over the season along with Mercedes Russell. They have a nice combination of youth and experience that should serve them well this year.

2. Las Vegas-this might be a little aggressive putting them at 2, but I think this is a breakout year given the lineup they have. A'ja Wilson does best being the only post on the floor and should flourish like she did as a rookie not having to share the paint with Cambage. Hamby pairs excellently with her and has turned into a very good PF. Vegas has a fantastic trio of wings too in Angel McCoughtry, Kayla McBride and possibly Jackie Young if Bill moves her off the ball. She had an underwhelming rookie campaign, but with more experience under her belt I think we'll see more of the ND Jackie Young than the rookie version.

3. Chicago-another team that looks loaded and primed to make a legitimate run for the title. Diamond Deshields might be the best open court player in the league and is a more consistent jumpshot away from becoming an MVP candidate. Sloot is the best passer in the league, Quigley one of the best shooters. They have strong backup guards in Gabby Williams and Kahleah Copper. Front court is the cause for concern. Dolson, Parker and Lavender make for a solid trio but none of them are stalwart defenders or particularly athletic. I think they will likely struggle defending top posts in the league. They did bring in some nice athletic bigs in Stevens and Hebard, both have their pros and cons. Stevens appears to like playing on the wing more than inside, and Hebard isn't a top tier defender despite having great quickness and good size at 6-4. I think the season likely hinges on Deshields ability to rise to stardom and if they can slow down opposing bigs.

4. Phoenix-they have a 3 headed monster in Griner/Diggins-Smith/Taurasi, but it's pretty slim pickings after that. Lots of filler players like Hartley, Walker-Kimbrough, and Vaughn who can contribute but have histories of inconsistency. They need more than those 3 to be in competition for a title, so someone has to rise to the occasion. Of those 3, question marks exist, too. DT is coming off a season of sitting out with injury and is 38 years old. Griner's passion, focus, and general attitude has been a big question mark the last few years, and SDS is a ball dominant point guard. All 3 like the ball in their hands, so I think it'll be a bit of an adjustment early. This team is more of a wild card IMO...they could be in the title mix or a 7/8 seed IMO.

5. LA-I might be underrating LA, but I'm just not "wowed" by their roster considering trades and sit outs. Gray and Nneka have proven to be consistent top level players. Parker never seemed like herself last year, whether it's age or decline in play is unknown at this point. They have athletic wings in Sykes/Williams, but no one else on the roster stands out to me much. Players like TRP, Wiese, R. Gray, Cooper and Augustus could elevate their play but I think they're going to be pretty out manned by a lot of opposing benches. Having one of Chiney, Kalani Brown or Vadeeva would've made a big difference. If Parker returns to pre-2019 form, LA is a title threat. If not, I don't think they'll be great.

6. Connecticut-I thought the Sun last season vastly overachieved and the team was better than the sum of its parts. The actual roster looks pretty darn different this season with Courtney Williams, JJ, and Stricklen all gone. I also think they lack quality size and have a plethora of not very efficient scorers in Jasmine Thomas, Bonner and January. Alyssa Thomas will need to take on a prominent role once again, and I think KML needs to elevate her play to replace Stricklen as a 3pt bomber. I can't see this team being nearly as good without JJ/Williams, but if Bonner can play efficiently, Connecticut can compete

7. Indiana-possibly a bold pick, but they have a very good, young roster that I think makes big improvements this year if players like Kelsey Mitchell and McCowan continue to improve. Big T was a monster at the end of last season and likely continues to build off of that. Everyone else is back, including Victoria Vivians who was stellar as a rookie. They have good vets in Dupree/Wheeler, but I think Kelsey Mitchell is the player who makes or breaks this team. If she can score more efficiently, they'll be incredibly difficult to match up with. Cox is also a great pick at 3, although my guess is she plays more of a backup role this year behind McCowan/Achonwa.

8. Washington-perhaps a bit low for the defending champs, but this just straight up is a VERY different team. Cloud, EDD, and Toliver are all gone. The team's success hinges largely on Meesseman, Atkins, and how well Mitchell incorporates as the new PG. Powers had a very good year last season too and is back. I think they'll look somewhat like Seattle did last year, where a lot of different faces elevate their play in the absence of stars. They can make the playoffs but I just can't see them being a deep playoff threat unless Meesseman puts together an MVP type of season and Atkins flourishes in a larger role.

9. Minnesota-I think they have a shot to sneak into the playoffs once again. Collier likely takes on a bigger scoring role this year without Sims in the lineup, as she's likely the face of the franchise going forward. Fowles is a very consistent post despite numbers dipping last year. After that it's slim though. Lexie Brown is a quality guard who likely starts in her 3rd year. Karima CK is another wild card who was excellent in 2017 but basically sat out the last 2 years with injuries. The combination of coaching, experience and Fowles/Collier gives them a shot to make the playoffs.

10. Dallas-I could see this team finishing as high is 4th or 5th if everything falls into place, or I could see them finishing 11th. They are incredibly young, but they look very good on paper. A lot has to go right though and I don't think it fully will. Jefferson was very very good as a rookie but hasn't been healthy since. Arike was one of the top players in the league the 2nd half of last season, but will shift over to playing off the ball more which likely will have some growing pains to work through. Players like Sabally/Alarie are very intriguing picks but I'm not sure either will light it up from day 1. Add in another intriguing player in KLS, but she barely played as a rookie. Post play is also a major issue, with Ndour being the likely starter and I just don't see the combination of her, Harrison and Gustafson competing well inside. Thornton/Gray are known commodities, and I think it's a relatively safe assumption that Harris will be a solid backup PG as a rookie even if she doesn't make a huge impact. If players flourish in new roles and stay healthy, this team could be very dangerous. If not, it may be a long season.

11. Atlanta-very likely a growing season for Atlanta as they will look completely different this upcoming year. They have some good players but no one who likes like a true star. Courtney Williams could be that star, so could Chennedy Carter, but I don't see the overall talent or depth to compete for a playoff spot here.

12. New York-just being frank, this roster looks pretty awful outside of Ionescu and Nurse. The team has 7 rookies on the roster, with only a couple of them being true WNBA caliber players IMO. Not all sold on Jazmine Jones, Shook, Holmes or Odom making any impact. Stokes and Zahui B I don't see as starter material posts. Walker I like as a pick but she's behind the curve right now due to covid. I think it'll be a long year for NY.


Awards:
MVP: A'ja Wilson (toss up between her and Stewart)
ROY: Satou Sabally (I think Ionescu struggles with a weak lineup)
COY: James Wade

All WNBA:

1st Team:

Vandersloot
Taurasi
Stewart
Wilson
Meesseman

2nd Team:
Deshields
Gray
Griner
Howard
Nneka

All Rookie Team:
Ionescu
Sabally
Carter
Hebard
Harris


Following up on this now that the season is over...here are my predictions for awards:
MVP: A'ja Wilson
ROY: Crystal Dangerfield
COY: Cheryl Reeve
DPOY: Brianna Turner
6th Woman: Dearica Hamby
MIP: Betnijah Laney

1st Team:
A'ja Wilson
Breanna Stewart
Candace Parker
Courtney Vandersloot
Skylar Diggins-Smith

2nd Team:
Napheesa Collier
Myisha Hines-Allen
Alyssa Thomas
Chelsea Gray
Diana Taurasi

All Rookie:
Crystal Dangerfield
Chennedy Carter
Julie Allemand
Satou Sabally
Jazmine Jones
 

TheFarmFan

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MVP: A'ja Wilson
ROY: Crystal Dangerfield
COY: Cheryl Reeve
DPOY: Brianna Turner
6th Woman: Dearica Hamby
MIP: Betnijah Laney
I don't feel qualified enough to know how to predict the results, but I think on the merits that's who I'd vote for in each category. Great list. Terrific seeing Crystal prove all those first-round drafting teams wrong! ;)
 
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Following up on this now that the season is over...here are my predictions for awards:
MVP: A'ja Wilson
ROY: Crystal Dangerfield
COY: Cheryl Reeve
DPOY: Brianna Turner
6th Woman: Dearica Hamby
MIP: Betnijah Laney

1st Team:
A'ja Wilson
Breanna Stewart
Candace Parker
Courtney Vandersloot
Skylar Diggins-Smith

2nd Team:
Napheesa Collier
Myisha Hines-Allen
Alyssa Thomas
Chelsea Gray
Diana Taurasi

All Rookie:
Crystal Dangerfield
Chennedy Carter
Julie Allemand
Satou Sabally
Jazmine Jones
Good list. If with Maya, Tina, EDD, Rene and Sabrina in it will be different.
 

bballnut90

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Good list. If with Maya, Tina, EDD, Rene and Sabrina in it will be different.

Thanks. I don't think Renee would've been in contention for any awards but agree about the other 3, not to mention Fowles, Jonquel Jones, Toliver, DeShields, Griner, etc. if they played and/or were healthy.
 
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Well the season is over and my earlier predictions held out fairly well.

LV and Seattle are the class of the league and the two favorites to win it all. LA isn't far behind. Minnesota was better than I expected and Crystal is the likely rookie of the year and Reeves should win coach of the year.

Connecticut and Washington were somewhat below what I expected and I don't see either making it past the first round but both coaches weathered drastic roster changes. Chicago was no doubt impacted by the lack of health from Deshields and Stevens. Phoenix actually did quite well considering they lost Griner and Hartley.

The four who missed the playoffs still have some work to do. ATL and NY were at the bottom of the league on paper and wound up there. Dallas and Indiana still seem to be missing one or more pieces to get them over the hump. I hoped McCowan would continue to get better but I think the compressed schedule caused her some fatigue. Truthfully I scratched my head over the coaching hire before the year and still wonder what Stanley brings to a young team and game that is so different than when she was a successful head coach. Dallas also felt the injury bug but Arike was still herself and Sabalay has the makings of a star. Mabry was a surprise to me but the Wings have an oddly constructed team for one who had so many draft choices a few months ago.

It's Vegas or Seattle to win the big prize if you ask me. I hope Bird is able to come back healthy and make an impact. Honestly I believe she should retire at the close of this year but still be on the 2021 Olympic squad as a mentor and leader of the younger guard.
 

donalddoowop

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Both are on teams that are likely going to finish in the top 4-5 teams, Collier is not. Howard is coming off an 1st Team All-WNBA season and Nneka made 2nd team last year. Neither has shown any signs of slowing down. Collier would need to drastically improve her production to elevate up to an All-WNBA team, especially being a forward which is consistently the most difficult position to beat out others for an All-WNBA spot.
You were a little bit off on this post, especially about Collier.;)
 

bballnut90

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You were a little bit off on this post, especially about Collier.;)

I was. I don't think anyone expected Minnesota to be nearly as good as they've been, especially without Fowles. Dangerfield came out of nowhere as a 5'5 2nd round draft pick to become their leading scorer, and Collier was excellent all year. The team played good basketball and was far better than the sum of its parts.

Reeve should be the hands down pick for COY in my opinion. For much of the season her starting lineup included two young second round draft picks, two other inexperienced late 1st round draft picks (Lexie Brown/Damiras Dantas) and a 2nd year player in Collier who was picked 6th. Finished 14-8, good for 4th in the league.

Compare that to a team like Phoenix who they finished ahead of that had 3 HOFers in Griner, Diggins and Taurasi most of the year. Or even LA who they finished just 1 game behind who has Parker/Nneka/Gray. Outstanding coaching job.
 

bballnut90

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Well the season is over and my earlier predictions held out fairly well.

LV and Seattle are the class of the league and the two favorites to win it all. LA isn't far behind. Minnesota was better than I expected and Crystal is the likely rookie of the year and Reeves should win coach of the year.

Connecticut and Washington were somewhat below what I expected and I don't see either making it past the first round but both coaches weathered drastic roster changes. Chicago was no doubt impacted by the lack of health from Deshields and Stevens. Phoenix actually did quite well considering they lost Griner and Hartley.

The four who missed the playoffs still have some work to do. ATL and NY were at the bottom of the league on paper and wound up there. Dallas and Indiana still seem to be missing one or more pieces to get them over the hump. I hoped McCowan would continue to get better but I think the compressed schedule caused her some fatigue. Truthfully I scratched my head over the coaching hire before the year and still wonder what Stanley brings to a young team and game that is so different than when she was a successful head coach. Dallas also felt the injury bug but Arike was still herself and Sabalay has the makings of a star. Mabry was a surprise to me but the Wings have an oddly constructed team for one who had so many draft choices a few months ago.

It's Vegas or Seattle to win the big prize if you ask me. I hope Bird is able to come back healthy and make an impact. Honestly I believe she should retire at the close of this year but still be on the 2021 Olympic squad as a mentor and leader of the younger guard.

Agree with most of this. I do think Washington has a good shot to win against Phoenix with it being one and done and Phoenix being a little shaky as of late. Washington is well coached and has some really good players. They're going to have an insane overflow of talent next if they have a roster including EDD, Charles, Cloud, Powers, Hines-Allen, Messeeman, Mitchell and Atkins all back. Taurasi hasn't shot well as of late but usually does great in "win or go home" type of games. Diggins is playing great and their lineup without BG has been strong.

Connecticut I think beats Chicago. Chi has been playing poorly without Stevens/Deshields and just doesn't have a lot of fire power despite having the best PG in the league. Connecticut I can't see advancing past the 2nd round but I'd put money on them in the opener tomorrow.

NY was terrible which was expected considering roster make up. Losing Sabrina was a huge blow and the rest of the roster is just not very good and it showed. Hopkins also did a pretty lousy job coaching IMO.
They turned into a 3pt specialist team with over 40% of their FGA from deep and they shot a dreadful 27.7% from there. Why is Kiah Stokes taking over 60% of her shots from 3 when she's only hitting 23.5% of them? I understanding wanting to have your posts utilize a face up game, but this just seemed lazy from Hopkins. They had moments of good passing and ball movement but overall were the clear cut worst team in the league.


Atlanta did surprise me as they came on strong to finish the season. Laney was an absolute stud for them and I think she's earned her place as a primary offensive option for next year. C. Williams was also stellar. Next year they'll be stronger with Kalani Brown likely healthy and potentially Hayes/Montgomery back. They'll also get a high draft pick.

Indiana was a let down...I thought they'd make the playoffs this year. That said, on paper they look solid next year if Vivians returns to rookie form, Cox makes the jump and is healthy, and they get Wheeler back. Big T was a let down this year, not sure if it was coaching related but once I think she'll be a beast next season. Kelsey Mitchell was excellent.

Dallas is a weird team. They're young and had some good moments but also they're just way too dependent on Arike. Part of that is on Arike for her trigger happy mentality, most of it is on Agler for not promoting better ball movement. Improvements are needed from Alarie, KLS and Harris going into next year. Sabally/Mabrey/Gray were bright spots, especially Mabrey who came out of nowhere to do a pretty solid job at PG. Sabally is going to be a star.

Ndour was a total bust for the amount they spent on her. They need to pick up a better post player. They don't need a stud, but getting someone with experience who can battle inside would be huge for them. Someone like a Cheyenne Parker, Natalie Achonwa, or a Kia Vaughn would be a great pickup. Getting a healthy Moriah Jefferson would be huge, but it seems like her best basketball days may be in Storrs instead of the W.


As far as playoffs, I think it's Seattle's to lose but they'll likely get tested vs LA in the semis and Vegas in the finals. They just have so many weapons. Potential weak spots are Canada's decision making if Bird keeps up her every other game management and Loyd can be streaky. Vegas is very good too, but I think their lack of perimeter shooting is going to hurt them, especially if McBride or Angel aren't hitting from deep. A'ja is going to draw a lot of fouls and get to the line but Seattle is so deep inside with Ezi, Russell, Stewart and Howard to wear her down. I think it's a tough matchup for Vegas, even though they've won both games. Bird was out for both, Stewart out for the 2nd one. I think Vegas handily beats Minnesota/Phoenix.

LA I believe will be a tougher hurdle for Seattle. They have great team, just not quite as loaded and deep talent wise as Seattle. Neither teams were at full strength during their first 2 meetings. I think Seattle is a little better overall but LA could take the series or put up a strong fight if they bring their A game.

My playoff predictions are:
1st Rd:
Phoenix over Washington
Connecticut over Chicago

2nd Rd:
LA over Connecticut
Phoenix over Minnesota

Semis:
Seattle over LA 3-1
Vegas over Phoenix 3-1

Finals:
Seattle over Vegas 3-1
 

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