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Indiana Fever’s NaLyssa Smith Making Waves in the WNBA

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In a remarkable display of skill and determination, NaLyssa Smith of the Indiana Fever is carving out her place as a rising star in the WNBA, showcasing her talent alongside her talented teammates. Despite a brief stint outside the starting lineup early in the season, Smith’s return to the first five has ignited a new level of performance.

Selected as the second pick in the 2022 WNBA draft, NaLyssa Smith has swiftly established herself as a force to be reckoned with on the court. Currently ranking among the top 16 rebounders in the league, Smith averages an impressive seven rebounds per game, trailing the Fever’s leading rebounder Aliyah Boston by a narrow margin.

Smith’s prowess extends to her shooting accuracy, where she stands among the top 14 players in the WNBA with a stellar field goal percentage of 50.3%. Her consistent performance in this aspect has been a crucial factor in the Fever’s successes this season, with Smith recording nine games where she shot 50% or higher from the field.

Coach Christie Sides emphasizes the importance of paint touches in the team’s strategy, highlighting NaLyssa Smith’s impact in collapsing opposing defenses. Smith’s partnership with rookie guard Caitlin Clark has been instrumental in enhancing the team’s offensive efficiency, enabling Smith to capitalize on post touches and deliver high-percentage shots.

Smith’s offensive output has been pivotal in Indiana’s wins, with the talented forward hitting double figures in scoring in six of the team’s seven victories. Her synergy with Caitlin Clark has unlocked new dimensions in the Fever’s gameplay, as the duo combines inside-out play to exploit opponents’ defensive weaknesses.

On the defensive end, NaLyssa Smith has made significant strides this season, averaging just over a block per game—a notable improvement from her previous seasons in the league. With 21 blocks in 19 games, Smith has already doubled her total blocks from the entire 2023 season, showcasing her growth as a defensive force in the WNBA.

As she continues to elevate her performance, NaLyssa Smith sets her sights on earning a spot at the 2024 WNBA All-Star game in Phoenix. With her consistent and efficient play on both ends of the court, Smith is making a strong case to be included among the league’s top frontcourt stars.

Rachel Adams

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