2013 WNBA Mock Draft

The 2013 WNBA Draft will be live on ESPN2 at 8 p.m. ET on Monday, April 15. After it's all said and done, this is how the first round might look.


1. Brittney Griner

Baylor - Center

Let's be honest, the 2013 WNBA Draft Lottery was essentially the Brittney Griner Sweepstakes. While several other players in this draft class – especially Elena Delle Donne and Skylar Diggins – are truly game-changing prospects in their own right, Griner is a once-in-a-lifetime player. And, in what is women’s basketball’s worst-kept secret at the moment, the Mercury will select Griner with this pick. Phoenix coach Corey Gaines has said it without really saying it and Griner has alluded to it as well. With this pick, and with Diana Taurasi and Penny Taylor returning from injury, Phoenix immediately becomes a favorite to win it all next year.


2. Elena Delle Donne

Delaware - Guard/Forward

It’s been debated -- well on both sides -- who Chicago should take here. I’m going with Elena Delle Donne. Her unique talents are too much to pass up, and if it wasn’t for the presence of Griner, the 6-foot-5 Delaware product would be the crowned jewel of just about any other class. Also, the Sky already have a productive point guard in Epiphanny Prnce, so they’re less likely to target Diggins. If Chicago does indeed take Delle Donne, they’ll have a fearsome combo of Prince running the point, Delle Donne on the wing and Sylvia Fowles down low. That’s a team that could vie to be the best team in the East.


3. Skylar Diggins

Notre Dame - Guard

With Griner and Delle Donne off the board, the obvious pick here is Skylar Diggins, and Tulsa should feel fortunate to get a player of Diggins’ caliber at No. 3. A proven winner, Diggins figures to step right in to a young Tulsa locker room and assume a leadership role. On the court, she can not only be a team’s primary distributor, but she can also stretch defenses with her perimeter and mid-range shot. She’s a tough defender and the Notre Dame product will give Tulsa instant credibility. And, she will give the Shock a whole new legion of fans. This pick makes even more sense for Tulsa because it lost guards Temeka Johnson and Ivory Latta this offseason.


4. Kelsey Bone

Texas A&M - Center

Washington head coach Mike Thibault joked that he has the "first pick in the other draft" -- and he has a point. With the first three picks all but a given, the rest of the first round will take shape after the Mystics make their selection. They are really the first domino to fall. If Thibault opts for a perimeter player, then Ohio State's Tayler Hill is probably the pick, but Thibault's decision will likely be a toss-up between Texas A&M's Kelsey Bone and Maryland's Tianna Hawkins. While Hawkins, a 6-foot-3 rebounding machine, has shown the ability to dominate in the ACC, the common refrain in the WNBA Pre-Draft Conference Call was that the league is getting bigger, faster and stronger. That’s why the 6-foot-4 Kelsey Bone is the pick here. In her pre-draft Q&A, when Bone was asked what three qualities best describe her game she said: Powerful, Physical, Strong. Enough said.

*UPDATE: With the Mystics acquiring center Quanitra Hollingsworth from the Liberty on Monday, this may be an indication that Washington is actually looking for a guard with this pick. Ohio State's Tayler Hill becomes a more viable option here.


5. Tianna Hawkins

Maryland - Forward

If Thibault passes on Bone, then she doesn't make it past this pick. But, if Washington opts for the Maryland product, then Liberty coach Bill Laimbeer will likely take a big that many people hold in the same regard: Tianna Hawkins. Hawikins has the ability to be an impact player in this is league. She relentlessly attacked the glass in college – she’s one of only three Terrapins to grab 1,000 rebounds (Crystal Langhorne, Marissa Coleman) -- and with Laimbeer's tutelage that could translate well to the WNBA. Tayler Hill will also be an option with this pick, but the prevailing wisdom is that the Liberty will try to grab a big with the first of their two first rounders.


6. Toni Young

Oklahoma State - Forward

This is a slightly unconventional pick, but Young fits in nicely with Seattle's plan. While they could still look for a perimeter player, their biggest need is in the frontcourt with Lauren Jackson and Ann Wauters not returning this season. Seattle coach Brian Agler also hinted that given those departures, as well as Sue Bird’s season-ending injury, that this Seattle team could be in a bit of a transition year, therefore they could potentially look for a player with more upside. That's where Young comes in. Outside of the "3 to See", maybe no player has more upside than the 6-foot-2 Young. She didn’t even play basketball until her second year of high school and she doubles as a track star. An unbelievable talent, she averaged 16.0 points and 10.1 rebounds per game her senior year. It might not be in 2013, but Young, once she adds to her frame, could be a future All-Star.


7. Tayler Hill

Ohio State - Guard

The Liberty will be thrilled if Tayler Hill slips this far. Laimbeer spoke very highly of her during the WNBA Pre-Draft Conference Call -- praising her versatility -- and she appears to be the right fit for Laimbeer's system and a potential potent complement to Cappie Pondexter in the backcourt. Despite dealing with complications of strep throat much of last year, Hill still averaged 21.1 points per game last season. She is the top perimeter scorer in this draft outside of the "3 to See".


8. Kayla Alexander

Syracuse - Center

Kayla Alexander obliterated the Orange record books and finished her career strong by averaging 17.7 points, 8.7 rebounds and 2.9 blocks her senior year. At 6-foot-4, her size will be coveted and San Antonio could use some extra muscle in the paint. The Silver Stars finished ninth in the league in rebounding differential last year and they will be without leading rebounder Sophia Young for most if not all of 2013 with an injury. So, the Silver Stars are going to look for size, and at this point, with many of the top bigs already off the board, Alexander is the best bet.


9. Kelly Faris

UConn - Guard

Indiana, with no discernible weaknesses, can really go any direction with this pick. If Kayla Alexander is on the board, she's a possibility, but I think a team with championship mettle will go after a player with the same makeup. Enter Kelly Faris. The UConn product is lauded for her work ethic and for her ability to be a good teammate. She would fit right in with the Fever and would provide them some versatility and some young legs in the backcourt. She’s also an Indiana native, so it would be a homecoming for her.


10. Layshia Clarendon

California - Guard

Where do the Sparks have a pressing need? The answer: nowhere. So, with a balanced and veteran team, the Sparks will probably just be looking for best player available with the 10th pick. An intriguing player when using that mentality is California native Layshia Clarendon. The Cal guard shined in the NCAA Tournament – taking the Golden Bears to their first-ever Final Four – and she has the potential to develop into a lethal scorer. She averaged 16.4 points as a senior and her Mohawk would look good in yellow and purple. Georgetown’s Sugar Rodgers is another potential option that fits this mold.


11. Carolyn Davis

Kansas - Forward

The Sun have said they would like to get a post player or a 3-point shooter with this pick. Unfortunately, many of their best options in both these categories will be taken by No. 11. Therefore, Kansas’ Carolyn Davis becomes a possibility here. At 6-foot-3, she represents the size that the Sun will be looking for, especially since Asjha Jones will miss the entire 2013 season. Davis averaged 15.8 points and 6.6 rebounds her senior year and she shot 68.3 percent for her career. Other options, if they choose to go for a shooter, could be Penn State’s Alex Bentley or Georgetown’s Rodgers.


12. Lindsey Moore

Nebraska - Guard

The Lynx, still void of true weakness, really only have one place on their roster for a new player -- and that's backup point guard. In a trade this offseason, Minnesota parlayed Candice Wiggins into Janel McCarville, who essentially replaces the retired Taj McWilliams-Franklin in the post, leaving a void in the backcourt. Monica Wright may be ready for a bigger role, but another steady ballhandler off the bench could benefit this team. If they choose Lindsey Moore, who is coming off an impressive NCAA Tournament run, Minnesota could have an heir apparent to Lindsay Whalen. A few other backcourt options that could be in play are Kentucky’s A'dia Mathies and Penn State’s Bentley, but Moore is the best fit.