With the 2020 WNBA draft now complete, Wings fans can now breathe a sigh of relief since the club held firm with its picks.
On Friday night, the Dallas Wings held picks 2,5,7 & 21 and did not trade them.
“We were able to execute a plan we’ve spent a long time building,” said team president and CEO Greg Bibb. “I think we added a lot of talent to our roster and on top of that some really great individuals to help build our culture and add to a really solid foundation that we already have in place. I think we’re going to look back on tonight 5 or 10 years down the road and realize how important of a night it was.”
At No. 2, the Wings selected Satou Sabally from the University of Oregon. With Sabrina Ionescu to New York at No. 1, this is the first pair of teammates to go first and second in the draft since 2016.
Sabally finished her career seventh all-time in points at Oregon, averaging 17.4 points and 7.4 rebounds per game during the final 19 games of her collegiate career. The underclassman won the Cheryl Miller Award Winner for nation’s top small forward this season.
“Getting into a new community,” Sabally said on what most excites her about coming to Dallas. “Being able to compete for a really great franchise, the suspense of Dirk and being around even my boyfriend. I’m just ready to come and play for Dallas.”
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Sabally brings some overseas experience to Dallas after playing with the German national team, averaging 20.7 points, 10.0 rebounds, 3.4 assists and 1.6 steals during the FIBA U20 European Championship game in 2018. She also won a gold medal and earned the FIBA U20 MVP award in 2017.
Dallas came away with a bevy of stars and the next one came at the No. 5 pick: Princeton’s Bella Alarie.
Alarie’s game draws comparisons to the likes of Elena Delle Donne. She has the tools to reach that MVP level like EDD, but at her own pace. Through four years, Alarie captured the Ivy League Player of the Year award in three out of four seasons. In her final season, she averaged 17.5 points and 8.6 rebounds, 2.4 blocks and 2.3 assists per game.
In Dallas with the tremendous amount of young talent, it relieves any pressure on Alarie and her growth in the WNBA. She leaves Princeton as the all-time leader in points, blocks and double-doubles.
At a school like Princeton, she not only faced challenges on the court, but in the classroom as well due to the demands of getting an Ivy League school education. If you know Head Coach Brian Agler, he loves players who work hard and compete every night.
“I think at Princeton, you know you have to work so hard in the classroom to even stay afloat,” Alarie said on what she’s taken from Princeton off the court that she can bring to the Wings. “So, I’ve always been a hard worker and wanted to be successful as a student that I can be. That’s something that’s always been important to me, basketball as well, but especially in the classroom at Princeton you have to put in the extra work and the extra hours to be one of the best student you can be. I think that’s something that I’ll bring to Dallas with me.”
Alarie is also the daughter of former Duke star and five-year NBA veteran, Mark Alarie.
With Dallas’ pick at number 7, they addressed a need that Agler emphatically thought that this team needed to have more of and that’s playmaking. Dallas selected Tyasha Harris with the seventh pick and got just that.
Harris is a dynamic point guard who is pass first, but can score the basketball. She is excellent at creating opportunities for her teammates and there’s even super early talk that she could be this season’s Rookie of the Year.
Harris is the seventh South Carolina Gamecock drafted in the first round in the past five seasons and all other SEC schools have just five.
“A true point guard mentality,” Harris said on what she brings to the Wings on and off the court. “I have a good and high IQ for the game. I know when to give the ball up, I know when to assert myself and go score a bucket. Off the court I feel like a have a booming personality and I have a big and contagious smile so everybody can see it.”
Dawn Staley has built a dynamic program at South Carolina and Harris was apart of the national championship team in 2017. That team included Harris’ now Wings teammates, Allisha Gray and Kaela Davis.
After the first round, the Wings had a slight wait before their next selection at 21, which allowed room to see who other teams are drafting and shuffle decisions around if necessary.
At 21, the Wings selected Luisa Geiselsöder as their final pick in the draft.
Geiselsöder played for Donau-Ries during the 2019-2020 season and averaged 18.8 points per game on 61 percent shooting from the floor. She has also played for the German national team throughout her professional career, playing for the U16 and U18 teams, respectively, while averaging 11.3 points and 6.3 rebounds in the 2018 EuroCup.
“We are thrilled with what we were able to accomplish in the 2020 WNBA Draft,” said Dallas Wings President and CEO Greg Bibb in a statement. “We are fortunate to add the talents of Satou, Bella, Ty and Luisa to the Wings family. I’m excited for our organization, our staff, our team and, most importantly, our fans as this group joins our young and talented roster and we build for a promising future. I believe tonight was a significant step forward for the Dallas Wings and I’m excited to watch this group play wearing a Wings jersey.”
Overall the organization is pleased with the results of their draft and seems to have gotten everyone they wanted with each selection. Though only time will tell whether their extreme youth on the roster will bode well or not for the foreseeable future.
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