G | 5’8, 163 lbs
2019 season: 34 games, 31.9 MPG, 14.5 PPG, 3.4 RPG, 5.4 APG, 41.5 FG%, 26.9 3P%, 79.5 FT%
Some questioned whether Odyssey Sims would be a good fit in Minnesota when the Lynx traded Alexis Jones to the L.A. Sparks to add Sims, a former rival, to their team in April.
Sims’ first season with the Lynx should have eliminated those doubts.
Sims grew closer to becoming the player she was at the start of her WNBA career by joining forces with the Lynx who embraced her gritty style of play. Sims came off the bench during her two seasons with the Sparks and was limited to a career-low 24-26 minutes per game. She earned a starting role early on with the Lynx and averaged 31.9 minutes per game, which was second-best on the team just behind Napheesa Collier (33.3). Sims averaged 8.9 points as a Spark but bumped that average up to a team-best 14.5 points per game after joining forces with the Lynx. Sims also led the Lynx in assists per game (5.4) and became one of only two players to average 14+ points and 5+ assists per game in the 2019 season along with Chelsea Gray.
Sims’ immense improvement kept her in the conversation for Most Improved Player of the Year all season long. The award ultimately went to Phoenix’s Leilani Mitchell who received an overwhelming 27 votes, but Sims came in second place with five votes from the national panel of sportswriters and broadcasters.
Sims’ 14.5 points per game were a team-high for the Lynx, but so were her 13.4 field goal attempts per game. She also led the Lynx with 3.3 turnovers per game, which makes sense considering her high usage rate of 24.5%. The next highest usage rate of the starters came from Sylvia Fowles who recorded a 19.8% usage rate.
Higher levels of success will come Sims’ way if she can bump up her 2019 restricted area field goal percentage (56.5%) and limit some of her turnovers while still acting as a main distributor for the Lynx.