The business realities of the WNBA often send players overseas during the league's offseason. They can make significantly more money playing in Europe over the winter but eschew offseason rest in doing so.
Due to NBA and WNBA regulations, Toliver will earn just $10,000 for her high-profile role.
"It wasn't an easy decision," Toliver told the New York Times' Howard Megdal. "For me, I looked at the pros and the cons, the pros obviously being I get to rest my body, it being my first time in 10 years of not playing year-round, not going overseas.
"Obviously there are financial burdens that come with that, but this is also a very exciting opportunity that I want to take advantage of, being home, still being around the game, around the best players in the world, around the best coaches in the world."
The small salary is because the Mystics and Wizards fall under the same ownership. League rules dictate that any pay Toliver was to receive for the NBA job would count toward the $50,000 capped total each WNBA team is allocated to pay players for offseason work.
Because Toliver's Mystics teammate Elena Delle Donne is of the WNBA's biggest stars, most of that money had been allocated for her promotional purposes.
The average WNBA player's salary in 2017 was $71,000 with a minimum of about $50,000. Many in the league have become increasingly vocal about the relatively low pay, with some recently slamming a proposal to give G League players a large raise.
In August, the Las Vegas Aces had to forfeit a game against the Mystics after a 26-hour, delay-riddled, cross-country flight odyssey. Unlike other professional clubs and even many college sports teams, WNBA teams fly commercial.