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Expansion Draft Analysis: Forwards and Centers

SF DEANNA JACKSON
G
MPG
P40
R40
A40
TS%
Reb%
Pass
Pos%
TO%
PER
34
13.9
13.7
6.5
1.9
.480
13
11.3
5
0.09
20
21.9
8
14.3
11
14.8
8

After a disappointing first season in Indiana, Jackson bounced back and was quite good for the Fever off the bench in a smaller role. She's the other restricted free agent selected by the Sky, but her presence at the team's press conference to announce its expansion selections seems like a pretty good sign they plan on having her around next spring. At 155 pounds, Jackson is slight for a modern small forward, but she's better suited at the position because she's not a great ballhandler. She more than holds her own on the glass and is a capable perimeter defender as well as one of the Sky's better scorers.

SF STACEY LOVELACE

G
MPG
P40
R40
A40
TS%
Reb%
Pass
Pos%
TO%
PER
34
17.5
14.1
7.2
2.1
.531
5
11.9
4
0.11
16
19.6
10
14.0
9
16.9
6

Minnesota found a great role for Lovelace last year, her second year with the Lynx. After using her primarily in the post in 2004, Suzie McConnell Serio put Lovelace at small forward last year almost exclusively. There, Lovelace has a natural height advantage at 6-4 and her desire to hang around the perimeter on offense is not an issue. A 41.3% 3-point shooter, Lovelace can really stretch a defense, and she was able to create plenty of shots last year, as her possession percentage attests. Defense against quicker players on the perimeter is an issue for Lovelace, but she's a valuable reserve. Alas, don't feel too bad for Minnesota for losing Lovelace. While her veteran presence will be missed, the Lynx needed to clear minutes for Kristen Mann, who showed great promise in limited minutes as a rookie.

SF LAURA MACCHI

G
MPG
P40
R40
A40
TS%
Reb%
Pass
Pos%
TO%
PER
13
11.4
17.0
4.9
1.9
.521
8.1
0.06
24.0
16.2
14.7

Macchi's 2005 campaign never really got going because of a broken bone in her right foot that sidelined her through late July. In Macchi's absence, countrywoman Raffaella Masciadri moved past her in the rotation, limiting her role. Still, Macchi was largely the same player she was in a highly successful rookie season - a great scorer who's not shy about shooting the basketball. Macchi's 40-minute scoring average of 17 points was second amongst the players selected by the Sky, and that will come in handy for Chicago in an instant-offense role.

PF DETRINA WHITE

G
MPG
P40
R40
A40
TS%
Reb%
Pass
Pos%
TO%
PER
13
6.9
7.1
9.8
0.0
.491
16.9
0.00
11.6
15.6
11.6

As an undersized widebody who is tough to move around in the paint, White is a quintessential expansion player. She never seemed to find a major role with the Liberty despite putting up pretty good numbers, particularly on the glass, in limited minutes, as New York went with more talented offensive players. Had White played enough minutes to qualify, her rebound percentage would have put her in the WNBA's top ten. Players of White's ilk often struggle with having their shot blocked, though she did shoot 54.4% in 2004. Defense is more of a problem, as White simply gives up much too much size to most power forwards (if not small forwards) at 5-11. Still, spotted correctly, White has value off the bench.

PF BROOKE WYCKOFF

G
MPG
P40
R40
A40
TS%
Reb%
Pass
Pos%
TO%
PER
34
17.5
7.0
6.4
2.3
.542
9
9.9
21
0.22
5
10.2
26
17.5
21
9.0
23

No matter what happens from here on out, Wyckoff will always be remembered for sending Game 2 of last year's WNBA Finals to overtime with her game-tying 3 at the end of regulation in a game the Connecticut Sun eventually won. Wyckoff is the quintessential role player, meaning her value will be more limited on a weaker Sky team. Last year, despite playing regular minutes, Wyckoff took less than two shots per game; only two WNBA regulars used a lower percentage of their team's possessions while on the floor. Wyckoff did hit plenty of her 3s (42.3%, including 14-for-20 (70.0%) in June) and is a quality defender who figures to take a leadership role for the Sky.

C BERNADETTE NGOYISA

G
MPG
P40
R40
B40
TS%
Reb%
Pass
Pos%
TO%
PER
26
9.7
17.7
9.7
0.3
.600
1
16.5
6
0.00
20
24.0
7
20.4
22
16.8
13

Hands down, Ngoyisa was the steal of the expansion draft in my book. The little-known native of Congo, who debuted as a 19-year-old with the Liberty in 2002, resurfaced last year with the Silver Stars and showed incredible promise in limited minutes. Her 40-minute averages of 17.7 points and 9.7 rebounds are star quality, and Ngoyisa shot 56.8% from the field. While Katie Feenstra blocked her path in San Antonio, Ngoyisa has the opportunity to be Chicago's top post player. Still only 23, Ngoyisa must develop her passing (five assists in 251 minutes) and ballhandling skills. Curiously, despite her athleticism, she only blocked two shots all season. Still, her potential is immense and largely untapped.

C ASHLEY ROBINSON

G
MPG
P40
R40
B40
TS%
Reb%
Pass
Pos%
TO%
PER
34
19.4
6.3
7.2
2.1
.353
23
11.7
19
0.09
6
13.5
23
17.7
16
6.8
23

A top prospect entering Tennessee who had much of her athleticism robbed by a torn ACL suffered while in college, Robinson started 15 games last year in Phoenix but showed her limitations in that role. She shot just 32.6% from the field and posted the second-lowest True Shooting Percentage amongst WNBA regulars. Robinson has good length and was a very effective shot-blocker for the Mercury, but she'll have to develop more moves inside to become a valuable regular.