Roster Review | Damiris Dantas
F | 6’3, 206 lbs
2019 season: 26 games, 25.6 MPG, 9.2 PPG, 4.5 RPG, 3.2 APG, 43.2 FG%, 39.3 3P%, 73.1 FT%
Damiris Dantas’ importance to the 2019 Lynx can’t be overstated.
The Lynx’s 2012 first-round draft pick, whom the Lynx packaged in a deal to acquire Sylvia Fowles in 2015, returned to Minnesota for her fifth WNBA season during February’s free agency. Head coach and general manager Cheryl Reeve’s pick-up turned out to be one of her most impressive of her busy, rebuilding free agency.
Dantas served as the Lynx’s starting power forward in all 26 games she played in and recorded career-highs in MPG, PPG and APG. Her 2019 3P% shouldn’t be overlooked, either. Dantas shot 39.3% from 3-point range after hitting 42 of her 107 attempts. She didn’t quite top her career-best 3P%, but that was recorded when she only attempted 15 3-pointers in 2015. Dantas was also one of the Lynx’s most reliable helpside defenders.
Dantas suffered a calf injury in late June and would go on to miss seven straight games, return for the Lynx’s July 21 game, and be sidelined for the Aug. 11 game. The Lynx managed a winning record during Dantas’ seven-game absence (and delivered the Connecticut Sun their only home loss of the regular season) but dropped two disappointing losses to the Dallas Wings and the Atlanta Dream who had a combined record of 9-17 at the time.
The main aspect of Dantas’ game that could use some improvement is her rebounding ability. Dantas averaged 4.5 rebounds per game, which was her best rebounding average since her rookie year in 2014, but it only ranked 25th among all forwards in the league.
Dantas said she’d like to improve her rebounding and post-up skills and take her 3-point shooting to the next level over the offseason in the Lynx’s final press conference of the 2019 season. Like Lynx head coach and general manager Cheryl Reeve, all Lynx fans should be excited to see what’s next for Dantas’ career.
“I told Damiris her exit interview was the most exciting and most important one that we were having,” Reeve said at the team’s end-of-the-season press conference. “She’s just shown us glimpses of what she can be.
“Damiris Dantas showed that she’s a big piece of what we’re doing; I’m really excited about her.”