Former Notre Dame basketball star was traded in a deal that created the next “Big 3”, as she will team up with two other massive stars.
On Wednesday, February 12th, the Dallas Wings and the Phoenix Mercury of the WNBA announced a trade. The deal sent former Notre Dame women’s basketball star Skylar Diggins-Smith to Phoenix in exchange for three first-round draft picks.
Diggins-Smith will join forces with Diana Taurasi and Brittney Griner to form basketball’s next “Big 3.” As is always the case in the aftermath of these blockbuster trades, the Phoenix Mercury will probably become the most hated team in the WNBA.
Taurasi was the number one overall pick in 2004. Griner and Diggins-Smith were selected with the first and third overall picks (respectively) in 2013.
The trio has a very complimentary set of skills. Taurasi is a pure scorer. She is the WNBA’s all-time leading scorer with 8,575 career points. Griner is a strong presence in the paint. She holds the WNBA records for most blocks in a single game and most blocks in a single season.
Diggins-Smith definitely has the ability to score, but she is also a great facilitator for the offense. She averaged 18.3 points per game and 6.3 assists per game in 2018.
This deal seems like a win-win for both teams. Diggins-Smith’s relationship with the Dallas front office became a bit fractured following her pregnancy in 2018. During that time, she felt like she received little to no support from the organization.
Following the birth of her son in April of 2019, Diggins-Smith sat out the entire 2019 season. That decision led many to believe her time with the Dallas Wings was over.
A fresh start for both sides should be mutually beneficial, and three first-round draft picks is a fair price for a player the caliber of Diggins-Smith.
WNBA fans will have to wait until May to see this new “Big 3” in action. The real question is: will the Mercury host a fan event before then so Skylar Diggins-Smith can get on stage and make a “not two, not three, not four, not five…” statement like LeBron did back in 2010.