Looking Back: Liberty & The Dispersal Draft

With the next WNBA dispersal draft on the horizon, NYLiberty.com is taking a look at the franchise's history in acquiring players via the dispersal draft, as well as how those players and the team did after their arrival in New York. Let's find out, shall we?

In the dispersal draft of 2004, the Liberty acquired center Ann Wauters from the Cleveland Rockers with fourth overall pick.

The 6-4 Belgian averaged 20.8 mpg, 6.3 ppg and 3.1 rpg through the first 13 games of the summer, earning four starts before being sidelined with a stress fracture. The injury would keep her off the court for the remainder of the season. Wauters did hand out a career-high eight assists versus the Sparks on June 29th, an individual best that still stands today.

That summer, the Liberty made its sixth post-season appearance in seven years, advancing to the Eastern Conference Finals for the fourth time.

It was just a few years later that the Liberty acquired another center, Janel McCarville, from the Charlotte Sting as the third overall pick in the 2007 dispersal draft. 

Plagued by injuries in her first two seasons in the WNBA, the former No. 1 draft pick came to the Liberty in full health and her play showed her true form. Starting 23 out of the 33 games she played, McCarville notched  a then career-best 10.4 ppg, led the Libs in scoring 11 times, was the league's No. 1 field goal shooter and was named by the WNBA as the 2007 Most Improved Player.

After missing the Playoffs the year before, McCarville's addition to the roster helped New York march back into post-season territory.

What's in store for the next dispersal draft pick? How will that player fair in the Big Apple next summer? We'll have to find out together. Tickets for the Liberty's ride through the 2010 WNBA season are on sale now by calling 212-465-6073.

Compiled by Jessica Quas