Monique Billings – Draft Profile
By Matt Hallett
Monique Billings is a 6’4” forward from UCLA. Billings played three seasons of college ball with one of the highlights of being selected by Athletes in Action to compete against France, Poland and Latvia.
Billings was also named to the USA Women’s U23 National Team where she helped the team win the inaugural U24 four nations tournament. Billings was also crucial in back-to-back visits by UCLA to the Sweet 16 in the NCAA tournament.
This season Billings almost averaged a double-double with 14.7 points and 9.8 rebounds per game. Billings also averaged 1.0 steals, 1.5 blocks and a career-high 1.2 assists per game. These numbers were a little down on last season where Billings did average a double-double with 16.7 points and 10.5 rebounds per game.
Billings is a lean, mobile player who is able to finish in the high post with efficiency. She has been efficient in the low post in college. If she is going to be able to compete in the low post at the next level she is going to need to add some muscle to her frame, especially on defense.
Billings is slated to go late in the first round, probably to the Phoenix Mercury with the twelfth pick. One of the reasons she will not go higher is she has great potential. Her ceiling is high but other players in the draft are playing at a higher level now and can impact the league now.
By going to Phoenix, Billings will be competing with Sancho Lyttle, DeWanna Bonner and Emma Cannon for court time at forward. Billings did not make a 3-point shot in her college career. This may lead to her backing up Brittney Griner at center.
Billings has the height to match up with most reserve centers in the league. She could also use her agility to be a focus of the second unit on offense. Her ability to block shots will help the Mercury on defense but she is going to have to prove herself for coach Sandy Brondello to use her with any regularity.