The Mystics made a trade earlier today involving Kia Vaughn and Bria Hartley. That move was significant in a vacuum. But in Washington, we were anticipating something bigger in the works.
We heard rumblings of ... then-Chicago Sky forward Elena Delle Donne wanting to leave town — presumably for a team closer to Delaware. It just so happens that Washington is the closest team to her home.
And now, they have now won the biggest prize in the 2016-17 WNBA offseason.
Today, we’re proud to say that EDD2DC is happening!
According to Howard Megdal of The New York Times, the Mystics will acquire Elena Delle Donne from the Chicago Sky in exchange for center Stefanie Dolson, sophomore wing Kahleah Copper, and the 2nd overall pick in the 2017 WNBA Draft.
As of the time of this writing, the deal is still unofficial, because free agent signings haven’t become official yet. Delle Donne would be an restricted free agent this year.
That said, the Mystics aren’t done yet. According to Gene Wang of The Washington Post, the Mystics also have more moves up their sleeve.
Can confirm agreement in place to send Elena Delle Donne to #Mystics, but nothing official until paperwork signed. Also, team isn't done.— Gene Wang (@gene_wang) January 31, 2017
Delle Donne is one of the WNBA’s top superstars and the 2015 WNBA MVP. She played for the Sky for her entire career after being the second pick in the 2013 WNBA Draft. In her four-year career, Delle Donne was the 2013 WNBA Rookie of the Year, was a three-time All-Star from 2013-2015, and led the Sky to the WNBA Finals in 2014. Finally, Delle Donne was a member of the 2016 USA Basketball women’s national team that won the Gold Medal in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
With this move, the Mystics now look more dangerous than ever. They will return a young core that includes 2015 WNBA All-Star Emma Meesseman, 2016 Most Improved Player Runner Up Tayler Hill, and a solid group of young players that include Natasha Cloud and Tierra Ruffin-Pratt. And as Wang noted, Mystics GM and Head Coach Mike Thibault probably has some more moves up his sleeve.
We’ll talk more about this from every possible angle in the coming days this week when Delle Donne gives her press conference, gets introduced at a Wizards game, and everything in between. It is definitely a great day for Mystics and all sports fans here in the D.C. area.
But at this point, there isn’t much more to say. I’m still in a state of shock that it’s really happening.
So, without further ado,
WELCOME TO D.C. ELENA!