Mercury Re-sign Point Guard Kelly Miller

PHOENIX, Feb. 15, 2007 – The Phoenix Mercury today re-signed unrestricted free agent point guard Kelly Miller to a multiyear contract, keeping the club's starting point guard in Phoenix, the team announced today. Per club policy, financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

“We got our point guard back,” said Mercury General Manager Ann Meyers Drysdale. “Re-signing Kelly to run our offense was a top priority. With this move, we’ve solidified our backcourt with a guard who knows her teammates, knows our system and who wanted to come back and help us win a championship.”

A six-year WNBA veteran, Miller will return to Phoenix after her best statistical season as a professional in which she averaged career-highs in points (11.0), rebounds (5.3) and assists (3.5). The 5-10, 140-pound guard also posted a team-high three double-doubles (points, rebounds) in just 27 games in 2006 after entering the season without a double-double through 160 career games.

The Mercury were a different team with Miller, who missed all but 16 minutes of the first eight games of the season with a partially torn right hamstring. After the Georgia product returned to the starting lineup on June 25 vs. Chicago, Phoenix went 14-9, including a franchise-record seven-game win streak to close the season. Perhaps most indicative of Miller’s impact is that Phoenix averaged 88.6 points per game with her as a starter in 2006 and 83.6 points otherwise.

Keeping Miller also gives the sharp-shooting Mercury four players who finished in the top 17 in three-point field goal percentage in 2006, more than any other team. Miller, who shot 38.0 percent from beyond the arc last season (12th-WNBA), joins All-Star guards Diana Taurasi (.397, 8th) and Cappie Pondexter (.373, 17th) and new Mercury guard Kelly Mazzante (.383, 11th), selected in the Jan. 8 dispersal draft.

Miller was acquired by the Mercury from the Indiana Fever on February 3, 2006, in exchange for guard Anna DeForge. A Minnesota native, Miller was originally drafted by the Charlotte Sting with the second overall pick in the 2001 WNBA Draft. She spent her first three seasons in Charlotte and the following two in Indiana.

Winners of a franchise-best seven straight to finish 2006, the Phoenix Mercury look to pick up where they left off led by All-Stars Diana Taurasi and Cappie Pondexter in the record-shattering offense of head coach Paul Westhead. Under the direction of new general manager Ann Meyers Drysdale, the Mercury own the No. 1 overall pick in the April 4 WNBA Draft. Phoenix opens its 11th WNBA season on Saturday, May 19 at 7:00 p.m. at US Airways Center against the San Antonio Silver Stars.