December 6, 2020 

The Dallas Wings’ 2021 WNBA draft plan

Dallas Wings come away with No. 2 pick in consecutive seasons

Welcome to The Next: A basketball newsroom brought to you by The IX. 24/7/365 women’s basketball coverage, written, edited, and photographed by our young, diverse staff, dedicated to breaking news, analysis, historical deep dives, and projections about the game we love.

Continue reading with a subscription to The Next

Get unlimited access to women’s basketball coverage and help support our hardworking staff of writers, editors, and photographers by subscribing today.

Join today

Subscribe to make sure this vital work, creating a pipeline of young, diverse media professionals to write, edit and photograph the great game, continues, and grows. Paid subscriptions include some exclusive content, but the reason for subscriptions is a simple one: making sure our writers and editors creating 24/7/365 women’s basketball coverage get paid to do it

Satou Sabally #0 of the Dallas Wings poses for a portrait during Media Day on July 16, 2020 at IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida. (Ned Dishman / NBAE via Getty Images)

Going into the WNBA Draft Lottery, the Dallas Wings had the third-most chances to win the top pick (178 out of 1,000), but came away with the No. 2 pick in the draft for the second year in a row. There’s lots of optimism surrounding the pick.

Dallas Wings president Greg Bibb seems prepared to continue to build around Arike Ogunbowale and Satou Sabally.

“They are foundational pieces to what we see as our future, but there’s a lot of other young talent on the roster as well,” Bibb told The Next. “And I’m really excited about what we’re building and I think we’re creating and opportunity for ourselves to become a good ball club for a relatively long period of time. But yeah, absolutely. It’s Satou and Arike. We have the building blocks and we’ll look to complement their skillset as we draft in the 2021 draft.”

Ogunbowale was a 2020 All-WNBA selection and led the league in scoring with 22.8 points per game. Sabally was a first team all-rookie selection and was the runner-up in the Rookie of the Year race this past season after averaging 13.9 points per game and 7.8 rebounds per game.

It’s not often teams get the luxury of having top one or two picks in consecutive drafts, but it’s happened a lot since 2015. The Seattle Storm picked No. 1 in 2015 and 2016. The San Antonio Stars/Las Vegas Aces had the No. 1 pick from 2017 to 2019. The New York Liberty had the No. 1 pick in 2020 and will pick first in 2021.

This year’s draft room will be without Brian Agler for the first time in the past two seasons after the coach and team parted ways in mid-October. Though it has been reported that Vickie Johnson will soon assume the role of head coach in Dallas, the team has made no official announcement.

“Well, I think we’re further along, I think we’re more defined,” Bibb said. “I think we’re more established in terms of what we are and where we are. So I think our need’s, probably a little more specific than they perhaps were last year. Obviously we got lucky last year that we were able to move up a spot which afforded us the opportunity to draft Satou Sabally, which was a huge opportunity for our organization.”

It’s tough to say from an outside perspective on who the Wings should draft, if they’re going to draft at number two. As of right now, there’s no consensus number one pick for the 2021 draft so far. Right now, center Charli Collier of the Texas Longhorns is leading the pack to be the number one pick with her incredible start with 30.3 points per game and 12.0 rebounds per game through three games.

Dallas could use a player like Collier if she happened to fall to number two because that is an area of need for them, but it may not be the best idea for the Wings to get younger. Historically, young teams don’t thrive in the WNBA. The only team in league history win the WNBA championship as the youngest team in the league was the Detroit Shock in 2007. The Shock, at an average 24.2 years of age, were the youngest WNBA title winner in history.

The Wings need some league veterans meshed into their roster to help lift the young core that they have built. Free agents on the market like Natasha Howard and Candace Parker are a couple of names that come to mind. Dallas could also facilitate a trade with another team in the time before the draft, but rest assured, they have plenty of options and assets.

Written by Drew Ivery

Leave a Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.