MINNEAPOLIS/ST. PAUL – The Minnesota Lynx finalized the team’s 2017 regular season roster this afternoon by waiving Shao Ting. With today’s transaction the Lynx roster stands at 11 players. Minnesota will begin its 19th WNBA season on Sunday, May 14 vs. Chicago at Xcel Energy Center with tipoff slated for 6:00 p.m.
This year’s squad returns eight players from the 2016 Lynx roster, highlighted by the starting five core of Seimone Augustus, Rebekkah Brunson, Sylvia Fowles, Maya Moore and Lindsay Whalen. The holdovers also feature forward Natasha Howard and veteran guards Jia Perkins and Renee Montgomery.
New to this year’s team is experienced forward Plenette Pierson. The Lynx signed Pierson as a free agent this offseason on February 1. Pierson, a two-time WNBA champion, joins the Lynx after spending 13 seasons with three different organizations (Phoenix, Detroit/Tulsa/Dallas, New York). In 410 career games, the Houston, Texas native holds averages of 10.0 points, 4.3 rebounds and 1.5 assists in 22.9 minutes per game. In 34 games with the Detroit Shock in 2007, Pierson averaged 11.6 points, 5.8 rebounds and 1.7 assists per game off the bench and was named WNBA Sixth Woman of the Year.
Joining Pierson in her first season with Minnesota are rookies Temi Fagbenle and Alexis Jones. Fagbenle was originally drafted by the Lynx in the third round (35th overall) of the 2016 WNBA Draft. After spending her first three collegiate years at Harvard, Fagbenle spent the 2016 season at the University of Southern California completing her master’s degree in strategic public relations. In 114 college games Fagbenle averaged 13.2 ppg and 8.9 rpg. Jones joins this year’s Lynx squad after being selected with the 12th pick in the first round of the 2017 WNBA Draft. She averaged 13.2 points, 4.7 rebounds and 4.8 assists per game this past season at Baylor University en route to being selected as a 2017 Associated Press Honorable Mention All-American and a unanimous First Team All-Big 12 selection. Jones spent the first two years of her eligibility at Duke before completing her career at Baylor.
Joining Head Coach Cheryl Reeve and Assistant Coach Shelly Patterson on the Lynx coaching staff this season as assistant coaches are James Wade and Walt Hopkins. Wade comes to the Lynx staff after serving as an assistant coach with the San Antonio Stars since the 2013 season. Hopkins joins the Lynx coaching staff after serving as Academic Coach at the University of California, Berkeley for Cal athletes and as the assistant women’s basketball coach at Utah Valley University from 2013-2014.
The Lynx will tip off the team’s 19th season in the WNBA with their home opener on Sunday, May 14 at 6:00 p.m. at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul. Full-season memberships, which include tickets to all 17 home games and priority playoff seating, are still available by visiting www.lynxbasketball.com/membership or by calling 612-673-8400.
2017 MINNESOTA LYNX REGULAR SEASON ROSTER
||Louisiana State ’06
||Florida State ‘14
||Texas Tech ‘04
||Texas Tech ‘03
Head Coach: Cheryl Reeve (La Salle)
Assistant Coaches: Shelley Patterson (Washington State), James Wade (Kennesaw State), Walt Hopkins (University of Nevada-Reno)
Athletic Trainers: Chuck Barta (Wisconsin-La Crosse), Kate Taber (University of Iowa)