Another big name is off the board. Late on Friday morning, the Phoenix Mercury announced that they have signed veteran forward and reigning scoring champion Tina Charles. Terms were not officially released, but it is a one-year deal for Charles, per Rachel Galligan of Just Women's Sports.
"Tina is an elite talent in our league and adding a player of her caliber is another example of our commitment to our fans and players to pursue a championship every year," Mercury GM Jim Pitman said. "Tina has made it clear that she wants to win and wants to do so in Phoenix."
Charles spent last season with the Washington Mystics, where she put together an incredible bounce-back campaign. After she had the worst season of her career in 2019, and sat out of the bubble in 2020, there were a lot of questions about her place in the league. She proved last season that it's still near the top, as she won her second scoring title averaging a career-high 23.4 points per game.
Even more encouraging, especially as it relates to her move to Phoenix, is that she shot 36.5 percent on 5.1 3-pointers per game last season -- both career-high marks. If she can continue being a legitimate threat from outside, the Mercury's offense will be even more dangerous, and new head coach Vanessa Nygaard will have plenty of lineup options involving the established frontcourt of Brittney Griner and Brianna Turner.
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However Phoenix decides to deploy Charles, she's not going to put up the same kind of numbers she did last season. Not on a Mercury team that features the likes of Diana Taurasi, Brittney Griner and Skylar Diggins-Smith. But while individual accomplishments are great, Charles has received plenty of them throughout the years. The one thing she hasn't done in her storied career is win a championship, and joining the Mercury, who are coming off a Finals defeat to the Chicago Sky, will give her a chance to change that.