The Briann January trade shows the rebuild is in full effect.
By Matt Hallett
With Brainn January being traded to the Phoenix Mercury for a draft pick, the rebuild is now of the Indiana Fever.
This season was always going to be tough for the Indiana Fever. The rest of the WNBA got better and they did not move the needle much. Apart from trading for Kayla Alexander, the Fever has simply re-signed their core from last year.
The Fever changed a second round pick to a solid contributor and a third round pick. However, the January move was even better for the franchise. In probably the deepest draft in WNBA history, the Fever has now got the second and eighth pick.
January, a 5’8” guard is a six time All-WNBA defensive player. She averaged 9.5 points, 1.5 rebounds and 3.9 assists in 25 games last season.
These are good numbers but unfortunately for January, she is on a team with a plethora of guard. Erica Wheeler, Tiffany Mitchell and Shenise Johnson all play a similar position. These players also all average similar numbers to January, in some cases better.
Now, with this trade, the Fever has a change at two potentially generational talents who could move the needle for this franchise for years to come. Now that Candice Dupree has re-signed, the Fever have a star to build around.
With the second pick the Fever can select a player like Maria Vadeeva who looks to be a project. The reason they can do this is the eighth pick will stiil have talent such as Jordin Canada, Lexie Brown or Monique Billings.
The Fever can go the other way and select Kelsey Mitchell with the second pick. They will then see what is left with the eighth pick. Whoever it is, they are guaranteed to have tremendous talent.
The future is bright for the Fever, they just have to get through this season.