Odyssey Sims is having a career year.
The Lynx’s star guard, acquired in a trade this offseason, took a little time to get used to the Lynx’s system, but now that she’s locked in the results have been absolutely outstanding.
On the season, Sims is averaging 16.2 points and 5.8 assists. She is the No. 6 leading scorer in the WNBA and averages the fifth-most assists However, if you narrow the sample size those numbers get even more impressive. Over the Lynx’s last five games—where Minnesota is 4-1—Sims has averaged 21 points and seven assists. Sims is already averaging career highs in assists and rebounds (3.6 per game) and she’s on pace to break her scoring record as well. She’s trending up.
Head coach Cheryl Reeve has been extremely complimentary of Sims this entire season, but especially lately.
“She’s a really good player and she attracts a lot of attention,” said Reeve on Monday. “So, she’s recognizing what really good shots are for our team. She’s involved in so many plays on both ends of the floor.”
Sims’ understanding of her teammates has grown by leaps and bounds this year. She is getting better and better at finding players like Sylvia Fowles, Lexie Brown and Napheesa Collier in their best spots. Everyone on the team likes the ball a little differently and Sims knows that.
“I’m surrounded by nothing but great shooters and great teammates,” said Sims. “Coach tells me that teams aren’t going to let me get in the paint as easy and she wants me to draw and kick, so I’ve been doing more of that. Really concentrating on that. Of course, looking for my shot when I come off, but it’s not always there. I have [Collier] at the top, [Fowles] on the duck-in, so it’s easy to maneuver and get passes to open teammates.”
Sims’ comfort level on the floor stems from her comfort level off of it. Even as one of the newer members of this squad she has been empowered to be vocal at practices and in games and her teammates feed off her energy.
Much of that is thanks to what has become a fantastic duo of coach and player in Sims and Reeve.
“Being here, being able to be myself and be comfortable, Cheryl is really good, she’s a communicator, she always talks to us individually and as a group,” said Sims. “That really helps me get a little more comfortable each day as the season has gone forward.”
Unfortunately, Sims’ efforts aren’t translating to All-Star votes. She was not in the top-20 of the first returns released last week—surprising given her position on the stat charts. However, like a true pro, she is not concerning herself with it. That doesn’t mean Sims doesn’t want to go, though.
“It would mean a lot, but that’s at the end of July,” she said. “We’ve still got games, we’ve still got things that we need to get done, and that’s more important to me before All-Star votes.”
While it’s unlikely she will make it in by fan vote, let’s hope the media and coaches recognize Sims’ accomplishments.