When: Friday, August 21 at 8 p.m. ET
Where: IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida
How to watch: WNBA League Pass, Facebook, Fox Sports Southwest Plus, NBC Sports Washington, NBA TV Canada
Wings: Satou Sabally (Back, Out); Moriah Jefferson (Knee, Out)
Stella Johnson let everyone know that she has arrived, in Washington’s win against the Atlanta Dream. In just her third game with the Mystics, the rookie had 25 points, 3 rebounds, and 3 assists in her 31 minutes on the floor. Johnson, who started the game, made an impressive 6-9 three-pointers while going perfect from the free-throw line.
According to Across the Timeline, Johnson’s 25 points is tied for 7th most by a player in their first WNBA start and is the 2nd most by a player getting their first start with the Mystics. The first is Ivory Latta who had 27 points. Without Johnson’s performance, the Mystics might have not been able to pull off the win. All eyes will be on the rookie against Dallas.
Before the Mystics beat Atlanta on Wednesday night they were on a 7-game losing streak. That win should serve as a boost of confidence as they face the Wings. Having the task of guarding the league’s leading scorer Arike Ogunbowale, will be the main priority for the Mystics.
Ogunbowale is now averaging 21.5 points in her 32.4 minutes per game. Luckily for her, she has several teammates that can score in double-figures on any given night. Those Wings that can be counted on are Allisha Gray, Marina Mabrey, and Kayla Thornton.
In the Mystics’ win against Atlanta, each starter scored in double-figures, marking the second time this season Washington had five players to do so. It would have been six players if Tianna Hawkins was able to notch just one more point. This is the exact energy the Mystics need to come with Friday night.