WNBA Rookie Report: All-Star Edition
By Cayla McMorris
It’s not a surprise that the Aces’ A’ja Wilson was the only rookie selected to the All-Star game because of her superwoman-like performances so far this season. She has stepped into a veteran role by literally putting her newly accommodated Aces team on her back. Through the entire season she has led her team in scoring at 20 points per game and even though she might have had a few games where she scored under her average, she still scored in double-figures. She has had 10 double-doubles already, in points and rebounds, and two games where she nearly had a triple-double. It is safe to say that at 6-4 Wilson does a little bit of everything which has helped her team to a 12 and 13 record. This may be shocking to some given that the Aces went through a lot of adversities with switching locations and having two of their key players, Kayla McBride and Kelsey Plum, arrive late due to their overseas teams. Chemistry was a big issue at first, but now it seems like things are starting to click as they are on a two-game winning streak. A huge majority of their success is due to All-star selection Wilson and her veteran-like leadership.
All-Stars in the Making: Diamond DeShields, Sky
Despite her up and down numbers this season, it is no question that we will see DeShields selected as an All-star in the upcoming seasons. Not only is DeShields one of the most talented rookies but arguably she is one of the most talented players in this league. At 6-1 playing in the guard position, she can create for herself and with her strength and athleticism she can finish well inside. Her last game has shown how versatile she can be; she scored 25 points (11 of 16 from the field), netted 3 of 5 three pointers, grabbed 5 rebounds (2 offensive), dished out 4 assists and even had one steal.
Kelsey Mitchell, Fever: Mitchell is a crafty scorer who can straight up shoot. (Hint that is why she will be participating in the All-Star three-point contest.) Mitchell has been struggling to find a rhythm but when she does find it, it’s unstoppable. As a lefty, she has shown her craftiness with the dribble and being able to pull-up and knock down shots from deep.
Jordin Canada, Storm: Canada might not be the scorer she was at UCLA but she is definitely a flashy point guard with a high basketball IQ. The reason why she is an All-star in the making is because of her creativeness and ability to see the floor. Fans love to see flashy players who can make the game more fun to watch.
Azura Stevens, Wings: There are not a lot of 6-6 players in the league who are as versatile as Stevens. Stevens’ ability to shoot, post-up and defend will help her become a star in the league. Her skill-set allows for her to stretch beyond just the paint and hit long jumpers which makes her all the more attractive.
Ariel Atkins, Mystics: Atkins is another rookie who is having success this season and as a tall athletic guard, she can score in many ways. She can shoot from long distance (36 percent from three-point line), she can finish at the rim and defend.