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  • Writer's pictureSadahri Lindsey

Trouble in Dallas? The Positives and Negatives of the Dallas Wings

From the end of the 2023 WNBA season, the Dallas Wings had a lot to build on. They have a fantastic core of Satou Sabally, Arike Ogunbowale, and Natasha Howard.


So what if I told you that the Wings started the 2024 season with a 3-10 record? You would be shocked, right? With a team like the Wings, you would think this team would be in the upper half of the standings. At the time of this article, the Wings have lost eight games in a row. So, what has happened to the Wings to cause them to have such a terrible record?


Arike Ogunbowale during MN Lynx vs Dallas Wings, on June 2nd, 2024 at Target Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota (photo credit John McClellan) CC BY-SA 2.0

Injuries

One of the main problems with the Wings' lineup is the number of injuries. Satou Sabally has been out with a shoulder injury for the entire season, and it doesn't look like she will be coming back anytime soon. Natasha Howard also had an ankle injury in the first couple of weeks of the season, and she should be back within the next month or so. With these two injuries, the Wings are left without two of their main scorers from 2023.


Another huge blow for the Wings has been the absence of Jaelyn Brown. This is her first season with the Wings, but she has shown a lot of potential since being with Dallas. She put up 20 points in a preseason game, and she was starting to look like the Wings' first option off the bench. Unfortunately, she broke her nose a couple of games into the season, and she has had an undisclosed illness that has caused her to not be able to play.


The Positives

From the outside, it seems like it has all been bad news for the Dallas Wings. However, there have been some positives for Dallas. Arike Ogunbowale has been the main scoring centerpiece for the Wings this season, averaging 26 points and five assists per game. She has also been a huge help on defense this season, putting up three steals per game.



Dallas' star center, Teaira McCowan has also been pretty good for the Wings this season. She is a big body in the paint that a lot of teams fear because she knows how to use her body to score and get rebounds. She has averaged 12 points and eight rebounds this season. She does this also while only playing around 27 minutes a game.


The Surprises

Monique Billings was not originally with Dallas at the beginning of the season. She was originally with Atlanta, but she was waived days before the start of the season. Once Natasha Howard was injured, Billings was able to play with the Wings via a hardship contract. Once Natasha Howard comes back, this contract will expire and either one of two things will happen. Billings will either get waived, or the Wings will make room for her by waiving another player.


Meanwhile, Monique Billings has had a huge impact on the Wings this season, putting up 12 points and nine rebounds a game. Billings has been with the Atlanta Dream since the start of her professional career, going back to 2018. Billings has never averaged more than 10 points a game with the Dream, but she has now hit her stride with the Wings. This is proof that Billings could work really well in Dallas' system going forward.



Another player that has been quite a surprise for Dallas has been Maddy Siegrist. Last season, she did not really get much playing time with the Wings, only averaging eight minutes. This season, Maddy Siegrist is averaging 32 minutes a game. She is also averaging 14 points, four rebounds, and has a field goal percentage of 54 percent.


The Problem

A person might have read all of the information and say, "Okay, they were missing players, and they found replacements. So, what is the problem?"


The Dallas Wings' number one problem is their defense. They average the highest amount of opponent's points in the paint in the league, which is currently 40. They also have the second-highest opponent second chance points in the league, which sits at 14. They average the most amount of opponent points from turnovers in the league, which is about 20 points per game. The Wings also have the third-worst overall defensive rating in the league.


Overall, the Wings solved their problems in terms of finding scoring from other players, since Satou Sabally and Natasha Howard were injured. Now, they just have to fix their defensive problems and stop being so careless with the ball. If they can fix these problems, they could crawl their way back to being in the playoffs.

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