WASHINGTON, DC – Washington Mystics General Manager Mike Thibault announced today that Olympic gold medalist and WNBA Champion Ariel Atkins has signed a multi-year extension with the team.
“We are excited that Ariel has committed herself to the long-term future of the Washington Mystics,” said Thibault. “She has been such an integral part of our success and is entering the prime of her career. Ariel has worked hard to improve every season and the respect she has in our locker room will allow her to take on an even bigger leadership role as we move forward.”
In her six-year career, Atkins (5-8, 167) has averaged 13.3 points per game, 2.9 rebounds per game, 2.3 assists per game, 1.4 steals per game and 1.8 made threes per game while shooting 42.0% from the field, 36.3% from three and 84.9% from the free throw line. In addition to leading the Mystics in all-time threes made (309), she is third all-time in steals (242) and seventh all-time in points (2243) in franchise history.
“I’m happy to have signed back with the Mystics,” said Atkins. “I’m excited for what’s to come in the future of this organization and my career in D.C.”
In her sixth WNBA season, Atkins has recorded averages of 12.5 points per game, 3.7 rebounds per game, 2.7 assists per game and 1.1 steals per game in 19 games played. On July 7, 2023, Atkins secured the first double-double of her career with a season-high 26 points and career-high 10 rebounds versus Indiana. Four days later, Atkins broke the record for the most three-point shots made in Mystics history with 309 total made threes to date, surpassing Ivory Latta (308). This season, she also became the seventh-fastest player in WNBA history to reach 300 three-point shots made, doing so in 163 career games. In 2023, Atkins leads the team in three-point shots made per game (1.7) and is currently tied with Brittney Sykes for the most threes made on the Mystics this season (33) despite only playing in 19 games.
A guard from the University of Texas, Atkins was selected in the first round (7th overall) of the 2018 WNBA Draft. In addition to helping lead Washington to back-to-back WNBA Finals appearances and a championship in 2019, Atkins earned All-Defensive Team honors in each of her first five WNBA seasons, the only player in WNBA history to do so, and was named to the 2022 WNBA All-Star team. Atkins was a member of Team USA that captured gold medals during the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and the 2022 FIBA World Cup.