Lynx GM/coach Reeve already looking ahead to 2022

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Lynx GM/coach Reeve already looking ahead to 2022
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Only two days after the Lynx season ended, Cheryl Reeve was looking ahead.

The coach and general manager is looking forward to the draft, to free agency, perhaps even to potential trades.

The Lynx started the season 0-4, then rallied to finish with the No. 3 seed, winning 17 of their final 20 games and nine of their final 10 in the regular season. Nine of the players on the 2021 roster are either under contract or under team control for next season.

Still, as Reeve said, "We know this team isn't going to be fully intact next year.''

That could be both because of the need to upgrade at certain positions, including point guard and in the post, and a key decision by a player or two.

But everything starts with center Sylvia Fowles. Coming off a season in which she put herself in the MVP mix and won her fourth defensive player of the year award, Fowles, an unrestricted free agent, said Tuesday she hasn't decided whether she will return for a 15th season.

"I still have some things to talk about with Cheryl,'' Fowles said. "I'm not sure at the moment, honestly. I'll keep you posted in the next couple months.''

Fowles, 35, said she wants to have children, so the decision could come down to whether to do it now, or, as she said, ''Hold off a little longer.''

Fowles' decision would have a huge impact on what offseason road Reeve and her staff takes.

Coming out of the bubble in 2020, Reeve was determined to be big on players in free agency, and she was. Kayla McBride, Aerial Powers and Natalie Achonwa were all signed.

Reeve is not as bullish on this season's free agency class.

"Depth remains a concern in the backcourt,'' Reeve said. "That was a weakness going into the season. We got some help from Layshia [Clarendon], but it continues to be a position we feel we have to improve. And, I think, in the post, same thing. Post depth is always an issue.''

Both Reeve and Clarendon expressed a desire for getting a deal done going forward. Indeed, Clarendon addressed the team after Sunday's loss, thanking the team for how much it helped her after a dark period following being waived by New York.

Reeve said one big emphasis of the team would be making sure each player stays in shape and works during the offseason. This comes after a very disappointing 2021 training camp where many players showed up out of shape.

"I will make darn sure there is an offseason plan for every player,'' Reeve said. "How we came into training camp can't happen again.''