The Mystics had room to spare for the Zahui B. trade

Feb 6, 2023 - 9:23 PM
2022 WNBA Playoffs - Washington Mystics v Seattle Storm
Photo by Joshua Huston/NBAE via Getty Images

UPDATE on Feb. 6 at 4 p.m. ET: I wrote this piece on Saturday thinking Sunday would be a slow news day. Instead, they made a big trade to get Amanda Zahui B.’s which effectively makes this piece moot. The piece shouldn’t have gone up in the first place.

I’m writing up something on the Zahui B. news now, but this piece still gives some insight on what the Mystics have cap-wise before that trade.

The first week of WNBA free agency signings have occurred, with the Washington Mystics signing Brittney Sykes and Kristi Toliver. They also let Alysha Clark sign with the Las Vegas Aces and renounced Rui Machida’s rights.

With the dust mostly settled, it appears that the Mystics have a pretty set roster, minus their 2023 first round draft pick. According to Her Hoop Stats, Washington has 11 players under contract, not counting Toliver for a total salary of $1,133,034. That leaves the Mystics with $287,466 of cap space, before taking Toliver’s salary into account.

There are four players under training camp contracts: Tianna Hawkins, Alisia Jenkins, Jazmine Jones and Evina Westbrook. Shakira Austin is also not on a guaranteed deal, but realistically, she’s on the team. All of them are earning veteran minimums (or a rookie scale contract in Austin’s case). And I don’t see all four AND the first round pick for the draft staying all season.

I’m not sure how much money Toliver will make this season. If she is earning a near-maximum level contract ($150,000 or more), there won’t be much room for Washington after their draft pick is selected. However, if Toliver is earning considerably less (like at around $100,000), it could give Washington breathing room to sign a veteran free agent or make a trade midseason for a postseason run.

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