The Phoenix Mercury (9-25) are ultimate within the standings, certain for the WNBA Draft Lottery in November.
Phoenix has a excessive chance of completing within the best two of its 2024 draft magnificence, which options 5 ladies’s school basketball gamers who might be All-Stars at some point.
That incorporates Iowa’s 2023 Nationwide Participant of the 12 months and senior guard Caitlin Clarke, senior guards Paige Buekers and Large Aliyah Edwards of Connecticut, senior ahead Angel Reese of LSU and senior giant Cameron Verge of collapse of Stanford.
This is the place Phoenix may just land within the draft order, its staff’s roster standing this offseason, and the way those draft possibilities may just are compatible into Phoenix’s rebuild.
Mercury’s 2024 Draft Place
The draft lottery laws are that the 4 groups that don’t make it to the playoffs will input the lottery.
On the other hand, the possibilities of the place a staff would possibly land in April’s draft order are in accordance with its two-year cumulative report (this season and ultimate season).
That suggests the Indiana Fever (now 11–24, a league-worst 6–31 ultimate season) will earn the highest general pick out for the second one 12 months in a row if they do not clinch a postseason berth.
Phoenix is moment general at 24-46.
The Los Angeles Sparks’ two-year report of 27–42 would position them 1/3 general.
The Seattle Typhoon made the playoffs ultimate 12 months. However it’s now eleventh within the standings at 10-24, a two-year report of 32-38, which places them in fourth position.
Groups have six or seven common season video games left to play. The draft possibilities may just exchange if LA loses extra video games to Phoenix in a row.
Imaginable exchange in Mercury roster
Phoenix’s Large 3 (Diana Taurasi, Brittany Griner, and Skylar Diggins-Smith) most probably may not be in combination after subsequent season.
Diggins-Smith, 33, might be an unrestricted loose agent (UFA) this offseason. It could be a wonder if she sided with Phoenix following her criticism previous this month to the social media platform X, previously referred to as Twitter, alleging abuse from the group all the way through her maternity go away in numerous posts. indicators once more. As well as, the six-time All-Big name level guard is being paid $234,350 from his Supermax deal whilst sitting out this 12 months.
Phoenix may just save that cash quickly to re-sign its main scorer and rebounder Ufa Griner, who’s making $165,100 this 12 months.
The 41-year-old Taurasi could also be heading in opposition to his farewell season as he simply ended the two-year $469,872 deal he signed in February. However Taurasi could have a couple of extra years left to play and re-sign any other deal.
Different Phoenix starters are Sophie Cunningham, Brianna Turner and Moriah Jefferson. Younger backup forwards Michaela Onyenwere and Kady Sissoko have signed their rookie offers via 2024.
5th-year middle and Griner’s backup might be Megan Gustafson UFA. She’s averaging occupation highs of seven.7 issues, 3.9 rebounds in 14.6 mins and capturing 34.3% from 3, so she’s competing for a worthy extension.
Veteran reserve level guard Shay Peddie, 34, can also be a loose agent. He has most effective performed in 18 video games because of accidents, and averaged 5.2 issues and 1.8 assists in line with recreation this season, so his go back to the staff is in query.
Phoenix’s different PG Sug Sutton, 24, is on a one-year deal. She’s been enjoying smartly this 12 months, averaging a team-best 4.4 assists and seven.7 issues in line with recreation in 24.6 mins, in the back of Taurasi’s 4.6. Phoenix may just fill that hole in the event that they needed to substitute Diggins-Smith.
Draft Potentialities Who Will Are compatible Into Phoenix’s 2024 Roster
Clark is a six-foot generational ability who used to be the country’s moment main scorer ultimate 12 months (27.8 issues in line with recreation). He is an exceptional shooter with deep vary like Steph Curry, makes his photographs off the dribble smartly towards any defensive set, and is a big danger off the ball. Clark might be picked No. 1 through Indiana and they may be able to congratulate the staff’s veteran PG Kelsey Mitchell within the backcourt to fasten down their high-scoring frontcourt Nalisa Smith and this season’s Rookie of the 12 months, Aliyah Boston.
The most efficient-case situation can be if Phoenix will get complete package deal bookers. She is making her comeback after a number of accidents, together with her torn ACL, which dominated her out for all the ultimate season. The Buchers are Taurasi’s moment coming as each are UConn veterans. Buekers got here into the 2019–20 season because the country’s splendid freshman and earned the Participant of the 12 months award, main UConn to 2 consecutive Finals appearances. If she does not keep at UConn for any other 12 months of NCAA eligibility till 2025, Buchers might be Taurasi’s successor in Phoenix, which is able to host the 2024 All-Big name Sport. With Buerks in position, Griner will make a perfect distinction on offense, and would be the franchise’s largest sale as its new Large 3.
Reese is a multi-faceted, athletic 6-foot-3 submit participant who received the 2023 Ultimate 4 Maximum Remarkable Participant award as he led LSU to defeat a Clark-led Iowa within the nationwide championship. She’s now not a 3-point shooter (most effective 4 of 23 from deep all the way through her junior 12 months), however she may just broaden that shot when she arrives within the WNBA to strengthen protection. However Phoenix wishes an ideal 4 to stability out Turner who’s extra of a shotblocker and performs splendid at the block. Reese will get buckets out and in of the paint, and is monstrous at the glass (his 23-point reasonable used to be 5th within the country, shot 52.5%, and his 15.4-rebounds ultimate season ranked moment along side 2.3 assists ).
Buekers’ teammate Aliyah Edwards is a bodily enforcer with comfortable arms, he has a forged outdoor capturing contact, and he is 6-foot-3. As Connecticut misplaced Buchers the former season, Edwards completed the staff’s main scorer (16.6 on 58.9% FG), second-best rebounder with 9 in line with contest, 2.4 assists, and UConn’s splendid 41 assists. Keep on par with the blocks.
Verge of collapse is a 6-foot-5 defensive specialist with the wingspan of an albatross. He has instinctive footwork that may additionally play smartly alongside the fringe of each ends of the ground. He averaged 15.8 issues, 9.8 rebounds and 1.8 assists, third-best within the country ultimate season, along side 3.5 blocks, and may just once in a while hit 3s.
Phoenix may just additionally use any other younger rim guard like Edwards, Reese or Verge of collapse because the staff is ultimate in rebounding and eleventh in defensive ranking (105.8) this season.