Mystics reportedly 'close' to agreement with Storm free agent Alysha Clark

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Tyler Byrum
·2 min read
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Mystics reportedly 'close' to agreement with Alysha Clark originally appeared on NBC Sports Washington

Two-time WNBA champion and free agent Alysha Clark is reportedly close to a verbal agreement to signing with the Washington Mystics.

The news was first reported by Rachel Galligan of Windsr.

Clark is a two-time All-Defensive Team honoree (second team in 2019, first in 2020) as a starter for the Seattle Storm the past seven seasons. A crucial member of the Storm's two championships in three seasons, the 5'11 forward has been a consistent presence in the team's success. 

Much of her stature in the league has come from her impact on the defensive side of the court over the past handful of years. Over the past three seasons, she has averaged 1.2 steals per game. She's also averaging 9.1 points in those three seasons and is a career 50% field goal shooter.

Never, though, has the 33-year-old be called upon to be a primary scorer or playmaker. Throughout her career, Sue Bird and later Breanna Stewart have been the key cogs of Seattle's offensive gameplan. That will be similar to what she could potentially step into with the Mystics with Elena Delle Donne, the presumed re-upping of Tina Charles's contract in free agency and the other stars on the roster. 

RELATED: What the Mystics need to accomplish in free agency

Washington saw Clark's impact first-hand when the two teams met in the 2018 WNBA Finals. In the 2018 title-clinching game, Clark scored 15 points on 6-for-9 shooting with nine rebounds and four assists.

The addition of Clark would be a huge boost to Washington's defensive efforts as they already have three-time Defensive Team member Ariel Atkins in the starting group. The Mystics are recognized for their historically great offense, this move will bolster the team's defensive efforts. 

Perhaps even more significantly, it takes a key starter away from the Storm. As defending WNBA champions, Seattle projects to be the biggest obstacle to Washington returning to championship-caliber form. Taking a piece away from your biggest competitor and adding to your team is one of the best ways to make gains in free agency.

Due to her potential signing, that will prevent the Mystics from returning all of their free agents from 2020. Clark will command a moderate deal that will leave little room to re-sign all of Charles, Emma Meesseman, Aerial Powers and Tianna Hawkins. 

Once agreed upon, free agents cannot sign new contracts until Feb. 1.