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Dallas Wings’ Satou Sabally named WNBA Most Improved Player

(Catalina Fragoso/NBAE via Getty Images)

Satou Sabally is the WNBA’s Most Improved Player for 2023.

Sabally was announced as the recipient of the award Thursday after averaging 18.6 points, 8.1 rebounds and 4.4 assists per game. The former second round pick was named to the All-Rookie team in 2020 and was an All-Star in 2021. Yet since her rookie season, she had struggled with injuries, playing just 44 games total across her first three seasons, including just 11 in 2022.

This year, though, she has started in all 38 games for Dallas. And she also has set career bests almost across the board.

Her previous career high in points stood at 13.9 per game in her rookie season. That year also provided her previous high for rebounds, with 7.8 per game. And before this season, she hadn’t averaged over 2.8 assists per game.

She also made the WNBA All-Star Game, and she made history in July when she became just the second player in Dallas Wings’ history to record a triple-double.

“I just wanted to showcase who I am,” Saballly told Sports Illustrated recently, “because I feel like a lot of times over these three past years I wasn’t on the court enough that people could really understand who I really am, so I just wanted to present myself to the world in the right way.”

Having been with Dallas since 2020, Sabally also has stepped into more of a leadership role on a young Wings team.

“I do feel like I have to show up every single night, and I think that is expected and I have accepted that role,” she said. “Even, you know, just stepping into a leadership role, accepting that I can’t be silent, even if I may have a game where I want to be a little bit more introverted and keep that energy to myself, you just can’t do that as a leader, and I think that is something that I’ve been trying to accept.”