The Indiana Fever had a horrible season in 2018. They need to address several needs in 2019.
Last season was appalling for the Indiana Fever. They finished dead last with only six wins. They have some quality young players who have an opportunity to grow. The Fever were not able to even have the first selection in the 2019 draft.
Despite this, not all is lost for the franchise. They still have their current franchise player in Candice Dupree as well as their young core. Here are a list of players who are coming back for the Fever.
Kayla Alexander – After being traded from the Las Vegas Aces, Alexander came off the bench for the 2018 season. Her length and athleticism were good on defense and she was efficient from the field.
Candice Dupree – Far and away the best scorer on the Fever roster. Needs more scoring around her and she should have it this season with the growth from last seasons rookies.
Stephanie Mavunga – One of the three rookies still on the roster from last season. Mavunga played less than eight minutes per game with averages of 2.2 points and 2.2 rebounds per game.
Erica McCall – In her third year, McCall played every game last season, even starting two. She did not score much and was inefficient when she did, only going 12.5 percent from deep.
Kelsey Mitchell – Last year was great for the development of Mitchell. Her 12.7 points were good but she needs to improve her efficiency. For the Fever to move forward, Mitchell also needs to improve her assists per game from 2.3 to over four.
Tiffany Mitchell – Played in all 34 games, starting 20 of them. Was solid without being spectacular. Was also horrible from 3-point range going 26.7 percent from beyond the arc.
Victoria Vivians – The eighth pick in the 2018 draft, Vivians took some time to get going last season. When she did, Vivians was able to shoot more than 40 percent from the field. If she can continue shooting at 39.3 percent from deep, she will help the Fever off the bottom of the ladder.
Free agents to be re-signed
The Fever have five players off contract this season. Not all of them will be re-signed as the team is looking for a way to move off the bottom of the ladder. They have about $500,000 in salary cap space.
Natalie Achonwa – For me the biggest and most pleasant surprise for the Fever was Achonwa. She had several massive games and improved her numbers almost across the board.
Shenise Johnson – Did not play a game last year due to injury. Her scoring and all around game will be crucial for guiding a young Fever team. The only caveat is that how she has recovered from her injury.
Unlikely to be re-signed
Cappie Pondexter – Signed to a rest of season contract Pondexter was fourth in scoring. However, due to her age, she is not on the same timeline as the Fever rebuild. If Johnson has not recovered from her injury then Pondexter should be resigned for a year.
Asia Taylor – Signed to a rest of season contract, Taylor was the most inefficient shooter of the Fever players last season. Shot 31 percent from the field and 20 percent from deep. These numbers are not good enough to warrant another contract.
Erica Wheeler – While Wheeler has the ability to score in bunches, she is not consistent enough. The Fever have plenty of guards and need to sign some solid contributors moving forward.
If they wanted to, the Fever could re-sign last years players and hope that organic growth will move them up the ladder. It is more likely that they will sign some quality, considering how much money they have in play.