Last season the Perth Lynx ended the season 8–13, good for fifth place and just missing out on the playoffs.
A 5–5 home record was more than respectable but just like many other teams last season, their road record was the Achilles heel.
Any team going 3–8 on the road is always going to struggle to make the playoffs.
Perth did a great job of taking care of lesser teams but did not have the top-end talent to beat the playoff teams consistently.
This was accentuated by the Lynx having no true centre, which larger and more physical teams took advantage of.
Captain Katie Ebzery was named to the All WNBL first team and Alison Schwagmeyer was awarded the sixth woman of the year award.
Additions Alex Sharp was one of the most underrated signings of the off-season. She is a Melbourne girl who represented Victoria and Australia, and then went on to play and start for the University of Wake Forest. While she is a rookie, it is more than possible that she will have an instant impact.
Subtractions Marena Whittle is a super sub and she left for the Adelaide Lightning and a larger role there. In her previous spots she has been an instant-offence player and a game changer in her sixth woman role. This was true of her time with the Lynx and it is sure to be missed. Her varied offence game and ability to guard multiple positions are tools the Perth coaches will miss.
Nadeen Payne is a larger-than-life power forward. She left for the Townsville Fire. Her inside-out game and pure height are a major loss to the Lynx. This will be even harder to replace in a year where teams cannot use the services of imports.
Lauren Mansfield is another loss. Losing a captain like Lauren Mansfield is no easy task to overcome. Her on-court and off-court leadership will be missed.
Alison Schwagmeyer is yet another loss. Losing the reigning sixth woman of the year to Sydney is a blow. Not only does a key player leave but she goes to a team that is trying to jump Perth in the standings. Schwagmeyer’s all-around game and IQ will be missed on such a young Lynx team.
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Summary A bright spot for the Perth Lynx is that top scorer Ebzery is not an import and will return for the 2020-21 season. This cannot be said for most teams’ top scorers.
Ebzery will be leaned on this season to teach and lead this incredibly young group of Lynx. Perth have obviously used this season as a development year for lots of local talent. The hope is that this will set them up with an exceptionally talented young core for the next few years.
Prediction A young team this season will have Perth in a lot of games but also have them lose quite a few close games. They will come seventh (4–10).