Wings Welcome Indiana Fever to College Park Center Thursday
The Dallas Wings (0-4) open a three-game home stand by welcoming the Indiana Fever (3-3) to the College Park Center tomorrow for a 7 p.m. contest. The game will be televised on the CBS Sports Network.
Despite a loss to the Washington Mystics, the Wings saw a season-high scoring performance from Glory Johnson, who collected 15 points on seven-of-13 shooting. Johnson has now notched 104 double-digit scoring games in her career, with last game being this first time she has done it this season. The Tennessee product is also on the cusp of appearing in her 181 game for the organization, which will tie Kara Braxton for sixth most played in franchise history. She has started in every game this season and is six starts behind tying Skylar Diggins-Smith for fourth most starts in organization history. Johnson's block she tallied against the Indiana Fever last week brought her career total to 86, moving her into ninth all-time on the Wings' total block list. Kaela Davis also tied a career-mark with her five helpers she dished out against the Mystics.
The Fever have gone on a two-game skid since last facing Dallas, dropping games to Phoenix and Seattle at home. Second-year player Kelsey Mitchell has taken the reigns as the Fever's leading scorer, scoring 20 or more points in three of Indiana's previous four games, and is averaging 15.3 points. Tiffany Mitchell follows closely behind at 14.0 points per game. Candice Dupree paces the team at 7.7 rebounds a game and Erica Wheeler is handing out a team-high 6.2 assists per game.
ROOKIE, ROOKIE, ROOKIE CAN'T YOU SEE
Rookies Arike Ogunbowale and Brooke McCarty Williams had quite the WNBA debut and continue to be solid producers for the Wings. Ogunbowale was the only starter to eclipse double-digit scoring figures in the Wings two games against the Dream and Lynx she is the fifth highest scoring rookie in the W. McCarty-Williams is the League's eighth leading rookie scorer and got her first career start at Indiana on 6/7. Her 4.5 assists per game are the most of any rookie in the League. BMW is also averaging the third most minutes played of any first-year player.
IT WAS DENTYNE, COACH
Coach Agler's reputation for defense has continued in Dallas. The Wings' defense is holding its opponents to 77.8 points per game, the fifth-best defense in the league. Dallas is also holding its opponents to 27.8 field goals made per game on an average of 66.0 attempts, second and third best in the league, individually. Opponents are also only making 6.0 three-pointers a game, fifth fewest in the league. The ball also don't lie to Dallas. Opponents are shooting 78.3 percent from the charity stripe against the Wings. Dallas is also keeping its opponents off the glass and foes are averaging 34.3 rebounds, fourth fewest.
DON'T GET CAUGHT WATCHING THE PAINT DRY
49.1 percent of the Dallas Wings' scoring this season had come from inside the paint, the most in the league. The Wings have scored 30 or more points in the paint in each contest this season, including 30 against the Fever, 32 against the Lynx and 34 against the Dream and Mystics.
BLOCKS AND BOARDS, WATCH YOUR FRAME SHAKE UP
Spearheaded by swatters Isabelle Harrison, Azura Stevens and Glory Johnson, the Wings have averaged 5.0 blocks per contest, placing them sixth best in the league. Harrison, Johnson and Azura Stevens have paced the team with offensive rebounds so far this season, helping the Wings average 12.5 offensive rebounds a game, second best in the league and 0.1 rebounds away for being on top. Dallas is also scoring 12.8 second chance points, fourth most in the league.
HERE'S A FUN FACT FOR YA
Kayla Thornton and Brooke McCarty-Williams rank third and seventh, respectively, for points per game by players who are in the WNBA but went undrafted. They are also one and two, McCarty-Williams then Thornton, for minutes a game.
ON THE MOVE
The Dallas Wings traded center Liz Cambage to the Las Vegas Aces in return for guard Moriah Jefferson and forward Isabelle Harrison. The deal also included the Wings picking up Vegas' first and second round picks from the 2020 draft. The Wings made another deal the same day, acquiring Imani McGee-Stafford from the Atlanta Dream for the Wings' 2020 third round pick. Jefferson, 25, averaged 5.4 points a game in 2018 after returning from injury halfway through the season. Harrison, 25, who took a medical leave of absence during the 2018 season, started 33 contests for San Antonio in 2017. McGee-Stafford, 24, appeared in 29 games for the Dream last season, starting two of them.
WELCOME TO TEXAS, COACH
The Dallas Wings hired two-time WNBA Champion Brian Agler to serve as the team's head coach on December 18, 2018. Agler joins the Wings with more victories than any other coach in U.S. women's professional basketball history. Agler brings more than 30 years of coaching experience to Dallas, including 12 years as a WNBA head coach. Before coming to Dallas, Agler was the head coach of the Los Angeles Sparks. Compiling an 85-51 overall record, Agler's guided the Sparks to four playoff appearances and the 2016 WNBA Championship. Agler's stint in LA also included back-to-back 28-6 seasons in 2016 and 2017 and a second appearance in the WNBA Finals following the 2017 campaign.
ALLOW ME TO REINTRODUCE MYSELF
The Dallas Wings resigned the duo of Kayla Thornton and Glory Johnson this off season. Thornton, who claimed a championship with the KB Stars of the WKBL before reporting to camp, started 32 of last season's 34 contests. The UTEP product averaged 9.2 points and 4.0 rebounds, all career-high marks, while shooting a career-best 44.7 percent from the field and 86.0 from the foul line. Johnson, entering her seventh season in the WNBA, has spent her entire career with the Wings organization. She appeared in 29 outings last season, averaging 8.0 points, 6.0 rebounds and 1.3 assists. Johnson's 1,448 total rebounds give her the second most total boards in franchise history.
A ROOKIE NOW
Dallas' first round draft pick, No. 5 overall, Arike Ogunbowale (Notre Dame) became a household name when she stunned UConn and Mississippi State en route to the Irish capturing the NCAA Championship in 2018 and was vital to the South Bend squad returning to the championship game the following year. She passed Dallas' own Skylar Diggins-Smith this season to become the program's all-time leading scorer. The 2018 and 2019 All-American was All-ACC First-Team in the same years.
TEXAS FOREVER, Y'ALL
The Wings made moves off the court by welcoming Texas Capital Bank as the team's marquee jersey partner. The community efforts of the two organizations started last month with the revitalization of the Sarah Wilke Youth Center, part of the Wesley Rankin Community Center in West Dallas, and will continue with more community events throughout the season and partnership.
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