- The Washington Times - Monday, January 30, 2017

WNBA star Elena Delle Donne is headed to the Washington Mystics, according to published reports.

The New York Times reported Monday evening that Delle Donne, who has spent her entire career with the Chicago Sky, was headed to the Mystics in exchange for all-star center Stefanie Dolson, 2016 seventh overall pick Kahleah Copper and the second overall pick in this year’s draft.

Delle Donne averaged 21.5 points, seven rebounds and 1.5 blocks for the Sky last season. She won an Olympic gold medal last summer.

Delle Donne was the WNBA MVP in 2015. The 27-year-old 6-foot-5 star announced in December that she was looking to move out of Chicago. Delle Donne was drafted second overall by the Sky in 2013 from the University of Delaware. 

Delle Donne is believed to have wanted to live closer to her family in Wilmington, Delaware. Her older sister has autism and cerebral palsy and is blind and deaf. Coming out of Ursuline Academy in Delaware, Delle Donne originally enrolled at the University of Connecticut before transferring to Delaware to be closer to her sister. She is known to use her offseasons to care for her sister.

The deal cannot be finalized until Wednesday, which is the first day that WNBA teams can sign free agents to contracts. Delle Donne is scheduled to become a restricted free agent, allowing the league’s other 11 teams to have the chance to negotiate with her.

The Mystics made a three-team trade with the Seattle Storm and New York Liberty earlier Monday, likely making room for a Delle Donne deal. The Mystics picked up Seattle’s No. 6 and No. 18 overall draft picks. The Mystics dealt guard Bria Hartley and center Kia Vaughn to the Liberty, who then sent center Carolyn Swords to Seattle. The Storm got Washington’s No. 15 pick.

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