The Washington Mystics re-signed all-star forward Crystal Langhorne to a four-year contract Thursday, clearing a path for her to become the franchise’s cornerstone player. She had been a restricted free agent following last season.
Langhorne was the team’s leading scorer (18.2 points per game) and rebounder (7.6 rebounds per game) in 2011, a season in which she ranked in the top five in the WNBA in points, rebounds and field goal percentage (53.4 percent).
She will enter her fifth season as the foundation around which Coach and General Manager Trudi Lacey constructs the team’s roster, particularly after veteran all-star guard Alana Beard signed a free agent contract Feb. 8 with the Los Angeles Sparks.
“We are absolutely thrilled to have Crystal continue her career with us,” Lacey said in a team-issued news release. “She has worked very hard and is poised to help bring a WNBA championship to our organization. With her leadership we look forward to a very bright future.”
The team did not release the terms of Langhorne’s contract, but a source with direct knowledge of the deal confirmed its length.
The Mystics, who finished 6-28 last season, will pair Langhorne with forward Monique Currie, who was “cored” by the franchise earlier this offseason, according to the source. That means Currie is signed through the upcoming season at the WNBA’s maximum salary, which is roughly $105,000.
Currie missed the first three months of the 2011 campaign with a torn anterior cruciate ligament in her left knee, but she averaged 11.8 points per game and shot 42.9 percent from the field while playing in four of Washington’s final five contests.
Washington selected Langhorne with the sixth overall pick in the 2008 WNBA draft after she’d completed a prominent career at Maryland. She helped lead the Terrapins to an NCAA title in 2006.
“I am excited to continue my career with the Mystics and to play in front of the best fans in the WNBA,” Langhorne said in the team’s news release. “I will continue to work my hardest to help bring a championship to D.C.”