Tanisha Wright To Bring Defensive Grit To Lynx

On Tuesday the Lynx signed free-agent guard Tanisha Wright. Wright—a 12-year WNBA veteran—has had an illustrious career, and will certainly help the Lynx compete for another title in the 2018 season. Wright last played in the WNBA in 2016 with the New York Liberty. In signing with the Lynx, she is ending a year-long break from the league. She spent last season as an assistant coach with the University of North Carolina at Charlotte women’s basketball team.

In her last WNBA season, Wright averaged 6.7 points on 40.1 percent shooting and 3.6 assists in 23.0 minutes per game. She holds career averages of  7.7 points, 2.7 rebounds, 3.1 assists, and 1.0 steals in 24.5 minutes per game.

Wright will bring a wealth of postseason experience to the Lynx. She reached the playoffs in 11 of her 12 seasons, and won a championship with Seattle in 2010. Wright is also one of only 16 WNBA players to record at least 3,000 points, 1,000 rebounds, and 1,000 career assists.

Wright projects to be a nightmare for opposing guards—she has made the WNBA All Defensive First Team five times and the second team twice.

The departure of Renee Montgomery and Jia Perkins left the Lynx with holes to fill in their backcourt—it’s safe to say those holes are now filled. With the addition of Wright, as well as the trade for Danielle Robinson, the Lynx now have two veteran backups with the proven ability defend and make smart plays.

Starting Lynx point guard Lindsay Whalen played with Wright overseas in the 2014-15 season. They both played in Kayseri, Turkey for AGÜ Spor, taking the squad to the TKBL Finals for the first time in team history.

“Tanisha has proven herself to be a formidable opponent throughout her career. She’s tough, experienced and as competitive as anyone I’ve coached against,” said Lynx General Manager and Head Coach Cheryl Reeve. “She’s the kind of player who always makes the game difficult for her opponent, so it goes without saying that we’re really looking forward to having her on our side.”

Wright’s defensive versatility will give Reeve more flexibility in creating creative lineups. If the Lynx want to play small, Wright has the ability to guard opposing forwards, but she can also play and defend the point guard position.

Wright has 1,231 career assists—13th most in WNBA history. She needs only 58 more to move into 12th. While her first priority will certainly be adding another championship to her resume, perhaps this season with the Lynx will give her an opportunity to move up in the record books as well.