WNBA Mock Draft: Liberty shake things up after Tina Charles trade; Sabrina Ionescu still goes No. 1


Well, well, well. Just a few days before what should be a very interesting virtual 2020 WNBA Draft, the New York Liberty shook things up. Already set up well for the future with the No. 1 overall pick, which they’re expected to use on Oregon guard Sabrina Ionescu, the Liberty added two more first-round picks on Wednesday in a blockbuster trade.

After six seasons, the Liberty traded franchise cornerstone Tina Charles to the Washington Mystics in a three-team deal that also involved the Dallas Wings. Now, the Liberty own three first-round picks: Nos. 1, 9 and 12. As for the Wings, they’re down from four first-rounders to three, but that still means those two teams control half of the first round. 

The trade shouldn’t impact the lottery, which seems pretty much set with Ionescu, Satou Sabally, Lauren Cox and Chennedy Carter. After that, however, it is absolutely anyone’s guess as to how things play out. And that’s not even taking into account more potential trades. But, as things stand, here’s CBS Sports’ WNBA Mock Draft 2020 2.0. 

1. New York Liberty: Sabrina Ionescu — G, Oregon

There’s no secret here. After a historic collegiate career at Oregon, during which she became the only player in NCAA history –man or woman — to record 2,000 career points, 1,000 rebounds and 1,000 assists, Ionescu will be the first pick. A dynamic point guard with elite shooting and pick-and-roll skills, the Liberty will hope she’s the foundation for their future. 

2. Dallas Wings: Satou Sabally — F, Oregon

Sabally declaring early was tremendous news for the Wings, who own four first-round picks. The versatile forward is a perfect fit for a young team that wants to get up and down. She has all the physical tools you could ask for, and the game to match. In particular, her ability to space the floor would make her an ideal frontcourt partner for Arike Ogunbowale. 

3. Indiana Fever: Lauren Cox — F/C, Baylor

There’s a real debate about whether Sabally or Cox is the best big in this draft, and it seems like the Fever will gladly take whichever one the Wings pass on. Cox has dealt with some injury trouble the past few seasons, but she’s such a smart player on both sides of the ball and would make a dynamite high-low frontcourt pairing with Teaira McCowan. 

4. Atlanta Dream: Chennedy Carter — G, Texas A&M

Chris Sienko and Nicki Collen must have been ecstatic when they heard Carter had declared for the draft. Even with the addition of Courtney Williams this offseason, the Dream are in desperate need of creative offensive players, and that’s Carter’s entire game. She averaged over 20 points in all three seasons at Texas A&M. 

5. Dallas Wings: Tyasha Harris — G, South Carolina

During a recent radio interview, Wings president Greg Bibb noted that the team was looking to address their need at point guard, and after the Tina Charles trade they have fewer picks to work with, so they may look to just grab Harris as early as possible. The South Carolina senior has good size, takes care of the ball and was touted for her leadership in college. 

6. Minnesota Lynx: Megan Walker — G, UConn

The Lynx need a point guard, but Walker is too talented to pass up. It was a bit of a surprise she declared early, and many believe she could have used another year of development in school, but her elite shooting ability on the wing makes her one of the most intriguing players in this draft. Plus, this pick will reunite her with former UConn teammate Napheesa Collier. 

7. Dallas Wings: Bella Alarie — F, Princeton

Even playing in the Ivy League at Princeton, Alarie established herself as a clear first-round talent. She’s super skilled for a big, and because of that might have the highest potential outside the lottery. She’ll need to get stronger and make her outside shot more consistent to fulfill her potential, but this would complete a nice haul for the Wings along with Sabally and Harris. 

8. Chicago Sky: Beatrice Mompremier, F/C, Miami 

The Sky don’t really have any glaring needs, which gives them flexibility and the chance to take a bit of a home run swing. Mompremier has the size and athleticism to compete at the WNBA level, is a strong rebounder and makes an impact on the defensive end. But she still has some work to do refining her offensive game.

9. New York Liberty: Ruthy Hebard — F, Oregon

After finally trading Tina Charles, the Liberty now have three first-round picks in this draft, and a glaring hole at power forward. The ultra-efficient Hebard, who scored 1.24 points per possession at Oregon and shot 68.5 percent from the field, would be a perfect fit. And that’s not even taking into account the fact that she already has a strong chemistry with Ionescu from their college days.

10. Phoenix Mercury: Crystal Dangerfield — G, UConn

The Mercury made quite a bit of noise in the offseason, but despite adding Skylar Diggins-Smith and Bria Hartley, they really aren’t that deep in the backcourt, nor that young. Dangerfield, who is quick and can really shoot it, would give them a point guard for the future. There’s definitely worse situations for Dangerfield than learning from Diggins-Smith and Diana Taurasi.

11. Seattle Storm: Te’a Cooper — G, Baylor

Even Sue Bird won’t be able to play forever, and the Storm are going to have to bolster their backcourt for the future. Enter Cooper. She can play on or off the ball, and had something of a breakout season at Baylor — her third school. Whether or not her 41.5 percent shooting from 3-point range this season is real will go a long way towards determining her ceiling. 

12. New York Liberty: Joyner Holmes — F, Texas

No one has ever questioned Holmes’ talent, but her collegiate career never took off because of a suspension and a broken ankle. With extra first-round picks now after the Tina Charles trade, using one of them to bet on Holmes might not be a bad idea for the Liberty. She’s an athletic, physical post player who loves to get out and run, and could end up being a steal.  





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