Ten-year WNBA veteran signs three-year contract

Phoenix Mercury re-signs Tangela Smith

PHOENIX – The 2007 WNBA Champion Phoenix Mercury has re-signed forward/center Tangela Smith to a three-year contract, the club announced today.

“Tangela was our number one pick last year for a reason,” said Mercury General Manager Ann Meyers Drysdale. “She was an integral part of our championship team in 2007 and we understand the importance of keeping her on the roster for her veteran leadership and her ability to play different positions. There is a calmness about her that the players respect. She is a true veteran who knows how to get things done on the court.”

“I am very excited about re-signing with the Mercury,” said Smith. “The entire organization and city embraced me with open arms and made my first year in Phoenix the most memorable season of my career. I feel at home in Phoenix and I can't wait to get back and help the team defend the title.”

The 6-4, ten-year WNBA veteran will return for her second season in Phoenix in 2008. In 2007 Smith was traded from Minnesota for the draft rights of Lindsay Harding, the Mercury’s No. 1 pick in the WNBA draft. In her first season with Phoenix Smith averaged 12.6 points and 6.5 rebounds to lead the Mercury to a WNBA title.

Smith owns career averages of 11.9 points and 4 rebounds. The University of Iowa graduate is currently playing for Dynamo Moscow in Russia, averaging 6.9 points and 5.4 rebounds.

On May 17, 2008 the 2007 WNBA Champion Phoenix Mercury will begin its 12th season under the direction of General Manager Ann Meyers Drysdale and new Head Coach Corey Gaines. Featured on ABC, the 2008 season will tip-off at US Airways Center at 12:30 p.m. against the Los Angeles Sparks. Tickets to watch the Mercury defend their title during the 2008 regular season are available now on phoenixmercury.com and by calling 602.252.WNBA.