After today’s win against the Tulsa Shock, and considering Washington Mystics guard Tayler Hill’s passiveness on the court, especially on offense, there may be some who believe that Matee Ajavon should start the next game which is next Sunday against the Atlanta Dream given that she played very well. But not so fast.
This is an article from yesterday evening by CSNWashington’s Ben Standig which focuses on Hill starting specifically. GM/Head Coach Mike Thibault said in an interview that “long term for our success, [Hill] needs to be a part of it” and also said that he will “throw her into the fire, make her learn on the run… concentrate on the defensive end and the offensive side will take care of itself.” This goes very well with Point 5 of Mystics owner Ted Leonsis’ Ten Point team building plan. In addition, Coach Thibault didn’t believe that having all four of his rookies made much sense.
As for Matee Ajavon, Mike Thibault said that she “can be a candidate for sixth-man of the year because she can play the point and the two.” That is up for debate according to some of you, but I do agree that Ajavon can be a strong scorer in the WNBA, especially against second units. In addition, Ajavon will still play good minutes and also have a chance to be on the “game finishing unit” which she was today.
After reading Coach Thibault’s rationale here and I should have seen this yesterday to be honest, everything makes even more sense than before and I’m so happy he’s coaching here in the nation’s capital. So I’d expect Hill to continue starting games and learning on the fly for now, and Ajavon will still get her time, and also get a chance to close games out when her shooting is on the money like it was today.