WASHINGTON (WDVM) — In 2019, the Washington Mystics won the WNBA championship, but the past two seasons have been impacted by COVID-19 and injuries.
If one thing was clear from the team’s media day Monday, it’s that the Mystics are ready to get back into championship form.
“They have a kind of quiet confidence,” said Mystics head coach Mike Thibault. “I feel like it’s all coming together somehow, when it’s meant to be. We have a pretty healthy group at the moment and it feels like we have big things ahead of us too.”
After sitting out the 2020 COVID season and only playing three games in 2021 after multiple back surgeries and nerve pain, Mystics star forward/guard Elena Delle Donne expects to be back at full strength for the 2022 season.
“I wouldn’t have gone through what I’ve been through for the past two years if I hadn’t come here to fight for a championship,” Delle Donne said. “I don’t just do this for the paycheck or for fun. I want to win.”
WNBA veteran Alysha Clark signed with the Mystics ahead of the 2021 season but did not play the full season due to a Lisfranc injury. Clark will debut for the Mystics this season.
“It’s been a really long process for me and I think the first day there were a few other players here, it just changed the energy in the arena,” Clark said. “You could feel this change in atmosphere and it got me super excited.”
Washington will start its regular season in a few weeks at home against Indiana Fever on May 6th. The high-anticipation season marks the franchise’s 25th anniversary.
“We have our core here. We know each other inside and out, we know our strengths and weaknesses, and we continue to grow each season,” said Mystics Guardian Natasha Cloud. “To have the same faces, to keep growing together, to kind of go through the storms is left at the end of the tunnel, we all know that.”
One-on-one with Mike Thibault