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WNBA rosters: Many surprises, final cuts complete

Finally, opening day rosters have been announced by each team.

David Sherman/Getty

The past couple weeks has left fans on watch of each WNBA team’s Twitter account and page on the league’s site as they anticipated which players would make it through each day of training camp.

That anticipation is finally over as teams have submitted their opening day roster.

Atlanta announced their final roster which included Angel McCoughtry when you check the team’s roster on McCoughtry announced months ago she would be taking at least part of the season off. More than likely, the Dream will make a cut when McCoughtry decides to return to the court as the max number of players a team can carry is 12.

Chicago’s roster at the moment has two key returners from last season who did not make the list: Allie Quigley and Courtney Vandersloot. Temporarily the two guards have been suspended as they have not returned from their overseas commitments.

At some point, two more players will have to be cut in order to make room for Quigley and Vandersloot when they finally join the Sky. It is also to be noted that Astou Ndour has been placed on a full suspension as she has yet to report.

Last season Connecticut put a lot of pressure on teams as they almost snuck their way into the playoffs. After what Coach Curt Miller called a “very competitive training camp” the team announced its roster. The Sun have eight members from last year’s squad back in action behind the leadership of Alex Bentley, Jasmine Thomas, and Alyssa Thomas.

Five rookies. Dallas kept all its rookies drafted this year. Fred Williams also stated like Miller this year’s training camp was “very competitive” and he’s “looking forward to an exciting season.” The potential is definitely evident on the Wings’ roster. The sky is the ceiling for these young players to spread their wings.

Entering her ninth season with Indiana, Briann January is ready to lead the Fever once again. Joining her will be Natalie Achonwa, Marissa Coleman, Nadia Colhado, Candice Dupree, Jazmon Gwathmey, Shenise Johnson, Erlana Larkins, Erica McCall, Tiffany Mitchell, Jeanette Pohlen-Mavunga, and Erica Wheeler.

Sydney Weise was the only rookie to make the defending champs roster this year. Los Angeles returns to the court with essentially the same leadership from a season ago.

While the Sparks will play at least their first game without Candace Parker and Jantel Lavender who are currently abroad still, there remains a lot of talent with the team. Also this year, Riquna Williams is back from her injury that sidelined her all last season. A complete list of players on their team can be found here.

Minnesota’s roster has the fewest adjustments. Once again they will have a strong starting five loaded with experience. The Lynx will only carry 11 players after waiving Shao Ting earlier today. There also is a full season suspension on Lisa Berkani who has not reported to the team yet. Minnesota welcomes three news faces including rookies Temi Fagbenlei and Alexis Jones, as well as veteran Plenette Pierson.

New York had to make one final cut today in order to reach the max number of 12 players: Lindsey Allen. With their final cut, the Liberty will open their season with Shavonte Zellous, Nayo Raincock-Ekunwe, Kia Vaughn, Bria Hartley, Rebecca Allen, Epiphanny Prince, Sugar Rodgers, Brittany Boyd, Amanda Zahui B, Cierra Burdick, Tina Charles, and Kiah Stokes.

There are a ton of new names on Phoenix’s roster this season. Despite the losses of DeWanna Bonner (pregnancy), Candice Dupree (traded) and Penny Taylor (retirement), Diana Taurasi and Brittney Griner remain on the team and are set to lead the Mercury once again.

With a new, yet familiar head coach, San Antonio has a roster that has been “adjusted significantly through the draft and free agency,” according to General Manager Ruth Riley.

The Stars have the most prolific scorer in NCAA history who happened to be the No. 1 pick, Kelsey Plum. Kayla McBride has been placed on a temporary hold until she returns from playing in Turkey. After sustaining an injury overseas, Clarissa Dos Santos is suspended for the season.

Head coach Jenny Boueck believes if Seattle can “integrate [our] new pieces and stay healthy, things could get interesting for this group.” The Storm returns key players Sue Bird, Jewell Loyd, and Breanna Stewart who are looking to take off this year. Seattle’s final roster includes three rookies plus veteran Carolyn Swords who was acquired in the offseason.

The team many people will be paying attention to will be the Washington Mystics. Mike Thibault pulled off arguably the biggest blockbuster trade in WNBA history when he acquired Elena Delle Donne from Chicago, plus he convinced Kristi Toliver to sign with the Mystics during free agency. Looking at the rest of Washington’s roster there is one thing for sure: anybody on this team can light up the scoreboard.

Tip-off is Saturday, make sure you tune in for what is sure to be another exciting season in the WNBA.