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Cunningham, Collier projected for top 10 in WNBA draft

Cunningham, Collier projected for top 10 in WNBA draft

January 11th, 2019 by Associated Press in Mizzou Sports
Sophie Cunningham of Missouri is projected to be a first-round draft pick later this year by the WNBA.

Sophie Cunningham of Missouri is projected to be...

Photo by Associated Press /News Tribune.

NEW YORK — The Associated Press polled a panel of WNBA coaches and general managers for a mock draft of the two rounds this spring.

Panelists were limited to college seniors and eligible foreign players, and they could not offer a pick for their own team.

While last season there was a clear-cut No. 1 in A'ja Wilson, there is no consensus top pick this year.

First Round

1. Las Vegas: Teaira McCowan, Mississippi State. The Aces franchise has the No. 1 pick for the third year in a row and can add a dominant post player to complement Wilson.

2. New York: Asia Durr, Louisville. The Liberty have many holes to fill. Getting a scoring guard who can create her own shot would help.

3. Indiana: Kalani Brown, Baylor. The Fever could use a big post player, and the 6-foot-8 Brown would fill that role well.

4. Chicago: Ezi Magbegor, Australia. Decided to play professional basketball at home instead of going to a U.S. college. She's 6-foot-4 and athletic and will be a difficult guard for opposing teams. Would give new coach James Wade an athletic post player.

5. Dallas: Katie Lou Samuelson, UConn. Would give Dallas a much-needed consistent threat from the outside to potentially complement Liz Cambage and Skylar Diggins.

6. Minnesota: Arike Ogunbowale, Notre Dame. Definitely knows how to hit the big shot after connecting on game-winners in the Final Four and NCAA title game last season.

7. Los Angeles: Napheesa Collier, UConn. New coach Derek Fisher would gain yet another athletic post player to join Nneka Ogwumike and Candace Parker.

8. Phoenix: Brianna Turner, Notre Dame. Turner would provide coach Sandy Brondello more athleticism in the post. When healthy she's one of the best players in college basketball.

9. Connecticut: Sophie Cunningham, Missouri. The 6-foot-1 Cunningham was an All-SEC pick last season who averaged 18.5 points and 4.7 rebounds. She could provide another offensive spark and toughness to the Sun.

10. Washington: Kristine Anigwe, California. Would give Mystics another athletic post player who knows how to score and rebound.

11. Atlanta: Alanna Smith, Stanford. Provides another 3-pointer shooter for the Dream as Smith is shooting 48 percent from behind the arc. She's also strong on the defensive side blocking shots and stealing the ball.

12. Seattle: Anriel Howard, Mississippi State. Has been a solid contributor on both ends of the court for coach Vic Schaefer. Great rebounder for her size at 5-foot-11.