When the Dallas Wings cut Erin Phillips, I stopped believing.
I know that is a fairly big statement, but when the Dallas Wings cut Erin Phillips at the start of the season, I was prepared to not watch any of their games. It is safe to say that self ban lasted one game.
In the second game of the season, the Wings played the Minnesota Lynx and the play of Skylar Diggins-Smith was something to behold. She had 22 points, five rebounds and eight assists. Her new back-court partner, rookie Aliisha Gray, had 15 points. Glory Johnson played with her usual vigor and energy.
The Wings would end up losing that game 89-87 but for me, the season was alive. I had not yet forgiven the Wings for cutting Phillips but she was working in a front office role and Dallas was exciting to watch.
Since that game, Dallas has played like the exciting young team they are. The youth movement has been promising. They had long term injuries to key players and they still succeeded. Courtney Paris missed a long stretch of games, she has shown her value with career best four assists in the last two games on the season.
Theresa Plaisance has more than stepped up with 7.7 points and 4.3 rebounds per game as the starting center. This has been the story of the Dallas Wings for the entire season.
While Aerial Powers was out, any number of young players stepped up to take her minutes and help the Wings keep their momentum going. Since returning, Powers has played 12 games, averaging 10.8 points, 4.2 assists and 1.5 assists per game. In these 12 games, the Wings have gone .500 which is better than the .471 they went for the season.
However, it has been the play of Diggins-Smith which has really made the Wings so watchable. In my opinion, Diggins-Smith is a top five player in the WNBA this year. She has averaged 18.5 points, 3.5 rebounds, 5.8 assists and 1.3 steals per game.
It is not just the numbers which tell the story of Diggins-Smith. When the game is on the line, it is Diggins-Smith who wants the ball in her hand. She has the mind of a Champion. Recently, Diggins-Smith tweeted a simple statement.
While Skylar Diggins-Smith is in the house, I will never stop believing that anything is possible for the Dallas Wings. Despite being knocked out by the Washington Mystics, the Wings are going to bring everything from the start of next season. If they get Liz Cambage to come across and play anything is possible.