The Washington Mystics have acquired former 2012 WNBA MVP Tina Charles from the New York Liberty in a trade two days before the WNBA draft.
In return, the Mystics will part ways with Shatori Walker-Kimbrough and four draft picks, including the 2020 12th-overall pick.
Charles, a 6-4 forward/center, has received All-WNBA honors eight of her 10 seasons as a professional, including the Most Valuable Player in 2012 where she averaged 18.0 points and 10.5 rebounds.
Throughout her career, she's been one of the most consistent post players throughout women's basketball. Across 10 seasons she is averaging 18.1 points and 9.5 boards.
“We are extremely excited to bring Tina Charles to the Washington Mystics. It gives us a dynamic new weapon at both ends of the floor,” Mystics general manager and head coach Mike Thibault said in a release. “Having coached Tina before in Connecticut, I know what a huge impact she can have on the game every single night. Her ability to score inside and out will make our offense even more dangerous than in the past. Her willingness to share the ball will make it tough for opponents to double team her or Elena (Delle Donne) or Emma (Meesseman) or any of our other scorers.
"She is one of the best rebounders in the history of the league and that is an area that we have been looking to improve going into the upcoming season. I also think her competitive fire will be appreciated by her new teammates and she will in turn thrive in our environment. I am thrilled to have the opportunity to coach Tina again.”
Thibault's final season coaching the Sun was Charles' MVP campaign. He drafted her in 2010 and was her coach for her first three seasons in the league. Since she has begun to develop her range as more than just a force in the low post. Her last four seasons in New York saw Charles attempt over 49 threes over the course of each season.
That addition to her game will allow her to be thrust into the Mystics' high-powered offense, while also utilizing her biggest asset: her rebounding. At 9.5 rebounds per game, she is 3rd all-time behind only Sylvia Fowles and Cheryl Ford. She's the fastest ever to record 400, 500, 600 and 700 boards in the WNBA and enters the season 5th all-time with 3,133.
Last season, Washington was the third-worst rebounding team in the league. However, their prolific shooting numbers also limited that statistical category.
Pairing Charles with Delle Donne will give Washington two former MVPs on the court at the same time.
In exchange, Walker-Kimbrough will head to New York after three years with the Mystics. Walker-Kimbrough was Washington's primary guard off the bench. As the team's 2017 first-round draft pick, she was expected to have a larger role with Kristi Toliver signing with Los Angeles and Leilani Mitchell not expected to garner the same amount of minutes as her predecessor.
The Mystics will also be parting with their 2021 first-round, second-round and third-round picks to complete the trade.
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