The Atlanta Dream will open the 2020 WNBA Season at IMG Academy in Bradenton, Fla., this month. The team will join the other 11 WNBA franchises at the prep school campus ahead of the 22-game season for an abbreviated training camp. Here are some things you need to know about the Dream.
Florida, Home of the Dream
The Atlanta Dream, which is the closest WNBA franchise to Bradenton, Fla., will be home for the next few months. Atlanta, which is only 500 miles from IMG Academy, will be playing in the state for the first time in franchise history since the Orlando Miracle (relocated) and Miami Sol (disbanded) left the state in 2002, six years prior to the Dream’s first game. Atlanta plans to bus down to Bradenton as the team prepares to enter the “bubble.”
Many New Faces in Atlanta
The Atlanta Dream has gone through an offseason makeover. After veterans Renee Montgomery and Tiffany Hayes opted out of the 2020 season to focus on off-the-court issues, the roster will see 10 new players around mainstays Elizabeth Williams and Monique Billings. This is only the second time in WNBA history that a franchise has seen this much turnover (Phoenix – 2017).
Three Rookies on the Roster
Atlanta will have three rookies in uniform to open the season for the first since time since 2016. Chennedy Carter, the No. 4 overall pick in 2020 WNBA Draft, leads the way as the highest draft pick by the Dream since Angel McCoughtry was selected No. 1 overall in 2009. Brittany Brewer, the team’s second round pick, and Jaylyn Agnew, who was signed as a rookie free agent after being cut by Washington, will join Carter.
Collen Reunites with Former Players
Though the Dream will feature a bunch of new players on the roster, head coach Nicki Collen is familiar with two of them from her years as a Connecticut Sun assistant. Atlanta signed sharp-shooting forward Shekinna Stricklen as a free agent and traded for electric guard Courtney Williams. The former Sun duo will play a major part in the Dream’s chase for a 2020 WNBA Championship.
Former Teammates Join Forces
Stricklen and former University of Tennessee teammate Glory Johnson will join forces for the first time since the two played for the Lady Vols in 2012. Stricklen was drafted No. 2 overall by the Seattle Storm and Johnson was selected No. 4 by the Tulsa Shock. Both players came the Dream via Free Agency this offseason.