Arlington, TX -- Since the official announcement of a new WNBA team in the DFW Metroplex, the Dallas Wings have created a non-stop buzz around town, and the season hasn't even started yet. The Wings have planted their roots in the community and last night was just another example.
"This is a big market; it gives us the opportunity to do a lot more than we did when we were in Tulsa. It gives everyone the opportunity to go to different schools ... and just be more involved in the community," said guard Odyssey Sims.
Family and friends from all over the map flocked to the College Park Arena last night for the Wings' 1st Annual Draft Party. For Dallas to be the new kid on the block, their fan base is strong already as the 2016-17 season quickly approaches.
Attendees were able to meet and greet two of the star players from the team, Skylar Diggins and Odyssey Sims, and they get a first look at the home and away game jerseys.
After the conclusion of the WNBA draft, Dallas welcomes to the roster:
1st round 5th pick forward Aerial Powers, Michigan State
2nd round 18th pick center Ruth Hamblin, Oregon State
3rd round 30th pick guard Shakena Richardson, Seton Hall
As if the Wings' roster wasn't already stacked, now they have even more depth, speed, and versatility. Powers is just the sixth player in MSU history to be selected in the WNBA Draft. Not only did she set career records in scoring but also in double-doubles. Before leaving the Spartans, Powers averaged 18.9 points, 9.8 rebounds, and scored 1,817 points.
"She can play multiple positions, she has great size, scores the basketball, penetrates ... a player that fits exceptionally well with the type of system Coach Williams and his staff provide," said Wings' GM Greg Bibb.
"We're looking to be a dominant Texas team," said Diggins.
Hamblin and Richardson were also decorated players during their college careers. Hamblin was the two-time Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year averaging 11.8 points and 10 rebounds.
Standing tall at 6'6", she's the fierce defensive threat the Wings truly need. Richardson is the first former Pirate in program history to be selected in the WNBA draft. She is also known for her entertaining style of play, but that doesn't take away from her 90 total assists to just 55 turnovers during her career at FSU.
Dallas kicks off the regular season against the Indiana Fever at Bankers Life Fieldhouse Saturday, May 14th at 5:00 pm. One week later, the Wings will play their first official home game against the San Antonio Stars at the College Park Arena Saturday, May 21st at 7:30 pm.
"We are working on being the best backcourts in the league ... our chemistry is going to get better ... we look to push the tempo more than we ever have and really just take over," said Odyssey before the jersey unveiling.
With a healthy roster and key players like forward Glory Johnson, Diggins, and Sims as the driving force, this team is well on their way to a successful first season as the Dallas Wings. And that shouldn't come as a shock.