Liberty end up with 4 of top 12 picks after draft-night deals

ByMechelle Voepel via ESPN logo
Saturday, April 18, 2020

The New York Liberty were involved in two trades on WNBA draft night, both bringing them forwards.

The Liberty received No. 10 pick Jocelyn Willoughby from Phoenix in exchange for the contract of guard Shatori Walker-Kimbrough. New York also got the contract of forward Stephanie Talbot from Minnesota in a swap for Rice guard Erica Ogwumike, who was the No. 26 pick by the Liberty.

With the trades, the Liberty ended up with four of the top 12 selections from Friday's draft and six overall. They acquired Oregon's Sabrina Ionescu at No. 1, UConn's Megan Walker at No. 9, Willoughby at No. 10, Louisville's Jazmine Jones at No. 12, Louisville's Kylee Shook at No. 13 and Duke's Leaonna Odom at No. 15.

Willoughby, a 6-foot wing from Virginia, averaged 19.2 points per game this season for the Cavaliers.

Walker-Kimbrough, a former Maryland standout, played for the defending WNBA champion Washington Mystics the past three seasons and had been traded to New York this week as part of the Tina Charles deal. Walker-Kimbrough now joins the Mercury; the 5-foot-9 guard averaged 6.7 points last year.

Ogwumike averaged 19.0 points this season for the Owls, and she joins older sisters Nneka (2012) and Chiney (2014) Ogwumike in being selected in the WNBA draft. Nneka and Chiney were No. 1 picks, and both now play for the Los Angeles Sparks.

Talbot is a 6-foot-2 forward from Australia who averaged 5.2 points last season for the Lynx.