WITH THE ABSENCE OF EMMA MEESSEMAN, HOW IMPORTANT IS THE MONIQUE CURRIE SIGNING FOR THE WASHINGTON MYSTICS?
By Matt Hallett
It has certainly been an interesting off-season for the Washington Mystics. Firstly they sign veteran presence Monique Currie. By adding Currie to the mix of players the Mystics already had, this made them a contender for the title in 2018.
Unfortunately, for the Mystics, their second best player for last season, Emma Meesseman, announced her intention to miss the WNBA season. She will be spending the time concentrating on the Belgian national team.
This now makes the Currie signing a vital one to the chances of the Mystics. With some of the signing's of other teams around the league, Currie needs to balance out the loss of Meesseman as best she can.
While Currie and Meesseman are totally different types of players, Currie is one of the most experienced players in the league. Currie has played 379 games over her career which is good enough for 27th all-time. However, She is sixth in current players.
Only Candice Dupree (280), Cappie Pondexter (386), Diana Taurasi (398), Rebekkah Brunson (428), Lindsay Whalen (448) and Sue Bird (477) have played more of players who are still in the league.
In tangible benefits, Currie is almost a direct replacement for Meesseman in scoring. Meessemen has a career scoring average of 10.83 points per game, which incidentally is good enough for 66th all-time.
Currie scores at a slightly lower rate of 10.66 points per game which is good enough for 71st all-time. Currie is also one of only 34 players who have scored more than 4,000 points in their career. Her 4,041 points has her sitting in 33rd all-time
Delving into last season's numbers, Currie is inferior to Meesseman on most major metrics. The two she is better in are incredibly important. The first is once again games played.
Meesseman only managed 23 games last season, missing a total of 11 games. Currie on the other hand played a total of 36 games. This was made possible by being traded from the San Antonio Stars to the Phoenix Mercury. The Stars had played two more games than the Mercury at that point in the season.
While Meesseman may have been statistically superior, you cannot win games for a team if you are not on the court. While Currie will not be able to take the slack if Elena Delle Donne get injured like Meesseman did last season, Currie will be important to the structure of the team.
The second area where Currie is an upgrade over Meesseman is in 3-point shooting. Last season Meesseman made 14 of 46 shots from deep which equates to 30 percent shooting. Currie on the other hand made 39 of 98 attempts. This equates to 40 percent from deep.
If you add this extra perimeter presence to Kristi Toliver who made the third most 3-point shots in the league last year (76) and the floor spacing is now better for the Mystics.
This will allow superstar Delle Donne most room on the floor to go to work. As anyone who has watched the WNBA will tell you, Delle Donne is one of the best one-on-one players the league has ever seen.
Currie has the ability to make any team she plays on a better team. This Mystics team will be no exception