The year is reaching its midpoint in July, and the WNBA is right about to have its midseason break during All-Star weekend on July 9-10. So for all the women's basketball Gamecock fans, here’s a quick rundown on how all former Gamecocks who have played in the WNBA's 2022 season have performed thus far.
Alaina Coates, Indiana Fever
Stats: 9.4 MPG, 3.0 PPG, 0.3 APG, 2 RPG
Coates, the 2017 No. 2 pick, joined the Indiana Fever and returned to the league for the 2022 season after taking a year off of the sport due to mental health concerns. In her season debut with the Fever, she put up 2 points, two rebounds and one steal on May 15 against the Atlanta Dream. Coates ended up only playing eight games for the Fever, and on June 7, the Fever announced that they were waiving her. She is currently still a free agent.
Destanni Henderson, Indiana Fever
Stats: 16.2 MPG, 5.5 PPG, 2.4 APG, 1.6 RPG
Henderson, the 2022 No. 20 pick, is the second of three former Gamecocks on the Fever this season. She is tied for the second most games played amongst rookies so far, having played in 21 games as of July 1.
"Me being a facilitator on the floor, but also being a threat offensively and just to trust and believe in my shot," Henderson said about her mindset on offense so far this season.
Believing in her shot has led to her hot start from beyond the arc, where she ranks third in the league in 3-point percentage amongst the players with more than 10 3-point shots attempted.
Tiffany Mitchell, Indiana Fever
Stats: 13.0 MPG, 4.6 PPG, 0.8 APG, 1.2 RPG
Mitchell, the 2016 No. 9 pick, is the third former Gamecock on the Fever this season. She’s in her seventh year in the league, making her the longest tenured former Gamecock in the WNBA right now. Even though she hasn't started many games this season, she's still appeared in 20 games, proving her worth as a valuable role player.
Allisha Gray, Dallas Wings
Stats: 31.6 MPG, 14.3 PPG, 2.3 APG, 5.4 RPG
Gray, the 2017 No. 4 pick, has had a large role on the Dallas Wings this season. She is second on the team in scoring and third on the team in rebounds, putting up 14.3 points per game and 5.4 rebounds per game.
She’s been able to surpass the 20 points mark four times this season. In a game against the Los Angeles Sparks on June 19, she put up her only double-double of the season so far with 20 points and 12 rebounds, going along with six assists and three steals. Unlike her diverse stat line in the game, the keys to her success so far this season are rather simple.
"I just play hard, stay humble," Gray said. "Good things happen to great people and I'm just blessed. I just continue being me and being quiet and minding my business."
Tyasha Harris, Dallas Wings
Stats: 16.1 MPG, 4.3 PPG, 3.0 APG, 1.1 RPG
Harris, the 2020 No. 7 pick, also joins Gray on the Wings. While she does not play nearly as much as Gray does, she’s still played a consistent role off the bench for 15 games. She’s also started five games this season for a total of 20 played so far.
She provides solid bench playmaking for the Wings, averaging three assists per game. Gray also reached double-digit assists once this season in a May 13 win against the Washington Mystics where she put up 10 assists to go along with her all around line of 6 points, two rebounds, two steals and one block.
A’ja Wilson, Las Vegas Aces
Stats: 29.9 MPG, 18.0 PPG, 1.6 APG, 10.1 RPG
Wilson, the 2018 No. 1 pick, is the only former Gamecock in the league to not play with another alumni. The Aces are second in the league at 15-6, and Wilson has been a big part of that. She currently leads the Aces in rebounds per game and is second in points per game, with 10.1 and 18.0, respectively. So far this season, she has put up 12 double-doubles and has scored a season-high of 35 points in a June 15 win against the Los Angeles Sparks.
"Offensively, I think everyone knows she's a special player," Aces head coach Becky Hammon said about Wilson after the win. "I think you're really seeing a well-rounded player even more so because of the defensive end and she's really showing what she can do defensively."
Additionally, Wilson was named a co-captain alongside Seattle Storm’s Breanna Stewart for the WNBA All-Star Game. Both players received the most fan votes to earn this honor.
With head coach Dawn Staley and the Gamecocks not losing any steam and continuing to put up dominant seasons, the WNBA is likely to see more South Carolina players join these six players in the coming years.