Minnesota Lynx finalize training camp roster

COLUMBUS, OH - JANUARY 04: Carlie Wagner
COLUMBUS, OH - JANUARY 04: Carlie Wagner /

The Minnesota Lynx have signed Vionise Pierre-Louis, Camille Zimmerman and G’mrice Davis to training camp contracts. With those three signings, the Lynx finalized and announced their training camp roster of 18 players on the team website earlier this week.

Pierre-Louis went undrafted out of Oklahoma, where she grew into a larger role for the Sooners with each passing season. She averaged nearly 16 points per game and shot 61 percent from the field this past season. According to HerHoopStats, the 6’4 center averaged 2.6 blocks per game, placing her in the 99th percentile nationally.

Zimmerman is a 6’1 forward out of Columbia. She averaged 19.5 points per game this past season and 22.5 points as a junior. In addition to being a high usage source of offense for her team, she ranked in the top-30 in the country in both offensive rebounds per game (3.9) and total rebounds per game (10.2) in the 2017-2018 season per HerHoopStats.

Davis played collegiately at Fordham and averaged a double-double in her junior and senior seasons. She averaged the fourth most rebounds per game (13.4) in the country this past season and posted the highest defensive rebounding rate (35.9 percent) in the country in the ’16-’17 season according to HerHoopStats.

Minnesota’s starting lineup of Lindsay Whalen, Seimone Augustus, Maya Moore, Rebekkah Brunson and 2017 MVP Sylvia Fowles returns along with second-year players Alexis Jones, Temi Fagbenle and Cecilia Zandalasini. Brunson was an unrestricted free agent this offseason and re-signed with the Lynx in February after becoming the first player in WNBA history to win five championships:

The Lynx went out and signed veteran forward Lynetta Kizer and acquired point guard Danielle Robinson in a trade with the Phoenix Mercury. After taking a year off, Tanisha Wright will make a return to the WNBA with the Lynx. Wright will be key in replacing Jia Perkins, who announced her retirement after the 2017 season, on the wing.

Forwards Endy Miyem and Breanna Richardson were signed earlier this offseason. 2018 draftees Jill Barta and Carlie Wagner round out the group of 18 for head coach and general manager Cheryl Reeve. Barta was acquired in a draft day deal with the Las Vegas Aces along with a 2019 second round pick in exchange for the rights to Ji-Su Park and Kahlia Lawrence.

Next: Scenes from Cheryl Reeve's first draft as GM

Perhaps the single most competitive position group of any WNBA training camp will be the four and five spots in Minnesota. Who is going to back up Brunson and Fowles? Natasha Howard was sent out in a sign-and-trade with the Seattle Storm and top reserve forward Plenette Pierson retired. Eight players will be battling down low for both a roster spot and a role off the bench with the reigning champs.