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Lynx Sign Former No. 4 Overall Pick Emily Engstler to Hardship Contract

Engstler, who was drafted fourth overall by the Indiana Fever in 2022, was waived by the Fever in April before signing with the Washington Mystics for the 2023 preseason.

Washington Mystics v Minnesota Lynx Photo by Jordan Johnson/NBAE via Getty Images

Roughly a month into the WNBA campaign, the Minnesota Lynx have made their first roster move of the 2023 Regular Season.

Minnesota announced Wednesday morning it has signed forward Emily Engstler to a hardship contract. Engstler, a 6-foot-1 forward, broke into the WNBA in 2022 when she was drafted fourth overall by the Indiana Fever out of the University of Louisville.

Engstler appeared in 35 games while making six starts during her rookie campaign in 2022, averaging 5.2 points, 5.2 rebounds, 1.5 assists and 1.1 blocks over 18.2 minutes per game. She also posted shooting marks of 39.6 percent from the field and 35.6 percent from three.

Ahead of the 2023 season, Engstler was waived by the Fever in April before signing with the Washington Mystics for a pair of preseason games. In those two contests with the Mystics, the 23-year-old totaled 15 points, 12 rebounds and one block.

Prior to joining the WNBA, Engstler played collegiately at Louisville and Syracuse spanning over four years. Over her college career, she averaged 9.1 points, 8.1 rebounds and 2.1 assists over 116 games. In her senior season and Louisville, Engstler averaged career-highs of 11.9 points and 9.4 rebounds along with 2.3 assists in 34 contests.

Coming out of college, Engstler was praised for her ability to provide high energy and a consistent rebounding threat, while also being solid on the defensive end of the floor and holding a high basketball IQ. Like we’ve seen with other players on the Lynx roster this season, Engstler has the ability to play multiple positions and can spread the floor nicely.

With this hardship contract, it’s a good sign that the Lynx might be without one of their two players currently out with ankle injuries — Diamond Miller and Aerial Powers — for an extended period of time. Miller has been sidelined since May 30 with a sprained right ankle while Powers has been out since June 3 with a right ankle injury.