Free agency opened on the first of this month in the WNBA, it came as no surprise that the Washington Mystics re-signed point guard Natasha Cloud. It was reported by several outlets that the New York Liberty extended an offer to Cloud, meaning that Washington had the right to match it within four days.
The Washington Mystics sent out a press release on the first stating that they were retaining the versatile guard, she later added via social media that it was a two year deal. It’s common for WNBA teams to say a player has a multi-year deal or extension and not expound any further in regards to details. So without Cloud sharing that information on social media, the public wouldn’t know.
Natasha rounded into form last season, finding her way and voice as Washington’s floor general. She’s a huge reason as to why they played so fast, she would routinely look up court for baseball passes or long outlets for easy baskets. She also improved on her biggest knock, outside shooting, making teams pay for leaving her. It was a career year for the former Maryland and St. Joes’ product.
Cloud improved in every statistical category including minutes per game (26.5), points per game (8.6), assists per game (4.6), field goal percentage (43.6), three-point field goal percentage (38.6) and free throw percentage (77.8).
The Mystics decision to retain her was a clear cut no-brainer, six foot point guards don’t grow on trees (yet). Still as mentioned earlier, there is still room to grow especially in the decision making department. As tantalizing as the long outlets or the sensational pass in transition is, taking care of the ball is at a premium. Washington was at a different level last year when they took care of the ball.
Natasha was drafted in the second round of the 2015 draft, her development over the past three years was evident throughout last season. Still there is room to grow as the point guard for a team that made a WNBA Finals run. If Washington wishes to build upon last year’s loss in the Finals, their versatile floor general has to continue to improve. It certainly won’t hurt that she’ll get one of Washington’s premiere players back in forward Emma Meesseman.