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Seattle Storm draft needs season preview: Sue and Stew return, can they win it all again?

Seattle couldn’t defend their 2018 championship after losing two of the best players in the WNBA to injury. Can they compete for it again all if they stay healthy?

Sue Bird of the Seattle Storm handles the ball against the Las Vegas Aces in a WNBA game on May 27, 2018 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas, Nevada. Photo by David Becker/NBAE via Getty Images

In many ways, the Seattle Storm lost their season before it even started. A ruptured Achilles to Breanna Stewart, perhaps the best collegiate basketball player ever and the 2018 WNBA MVP, was the death knell before she even got back the USA from her Russian team Dynamo Kursk.

And then when Sue Bird opted for knee surgery before playing a game, the gig seemed up for sure. But credit to the Storm for battling their way to the playoffs and winning a game before falling in the second round to the Minnesota Lynx. And the team will look very similar with two key additions hopefully back and healthy.

WNBA title odds: 8/1 (DraftKings Sportsbook projected odds)

Offseason moves

Usually WNBA rosters have a lot more turnover, but all the Storm did was swap picks with Connecticut and acquire Morgan Tuck for moving down from No. 7 to No. 11 in the first round.

Additions

Morgan Tuck

Departures

Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis (traded to Connecticut)

2020 WNBA Draft

Picks

1st round, #11 overall
2nd round, #19 overall
3rd round, #31 overall

Needs

The Storm return basically everyone from an 18-16 team last year, add a league MVP who couldn’t defend her trophy last season, and then the best point guard in basketball history (though at age 39 now). If they’d like to add anything, some shooting would be helpful. Returners Natasha Howard and Jewell Lloyd are both scorers, and Lloyd can knock down some threes, but someone to stretch the floor wouldn’t hurt.

If you think Jordin Canada can replace Bird someday, a 2 or 3 that can score from the perimeter probably fills a need. But if not, adding another UConn alum might be the perfect fit. Crystal Dangerfield shot 41% from three-point range for the Huskies last season, and would be an ideal pick if she’s still available at #11. Mikalya Pivec from Oregon State might be a good fit as a pure scorer and someone that can get better with time to ease into her game if she’s available at #19.