Thirty players eligible for WNBA All-Decade Team
As part of the WNBA's 10th anniversary, the league on Thursday announced it will name its All-Decade Team this season.
Beginning Friday, online users can vote for their top-10 players from a list of 30 nominees -- a group that was selected by a panel of national media, coaches, former players and WNBA personnel -- on WNBA.com. Voting also will be conducted among fans, select national and WNBA-market media, and current WNBA players and coaches.
Online fan voting will run through May 31, with the league's Web site issuing updates on leading vote-getters on May 17 and May 24. The 2006 season starts May 20.
The All-Decade Team will be announced during ESPN2's Sting-Mystics telecast on June 13. The squad will then be honored at the WNBA All-Star Game at Madison Square Garden on July 12.
"We view the celebration of our 10th anniversary as a way to mark the accomplishments of our past and embrace our vision for the future," WNBA President Donna Orender said. "The selection of the WNBA All-Decade Team will enable our fans and the league to honor the players who have contributed so much to the growth of the WNBA and of women's basketball."
The league's official Web site will feature a special section dedicated to the All-Decade Team, complete with player histories, statistics and video highlights of each nominee. Fans will be able to vote for their All-Decade Team players once per day.
Members of the All-Decade team will be selected on the basis of their overall contribution to the WNBA, with consideration given to on-court performance and ability, leadership, sportsmanship and community service, as well as contribution to team success and the growth of women's basketball.
Five former UConn players -- the most from any college program -- are included among the 30 finalists. Southern California had three former players on the list, while Tennessee and Louisiana Tech each placed two.
A look at the 30 official nominees -- a group that includes seven of the league's original players -- for the WNBA's All-Decade Team:
1) Janeth Arcain
2) Sue Bird
3) Ruthie Bolton
4) Vicky Bullett
5) Swin Cash
6) Tamika Catchings
7) Cynthia Cooper
8) Tamecka Dixon
9) Jennifer Gillom
10) Yolanda Griffith
11) Becky Hammon
12) Chamique Holdsclaw
13) Lauren Jackson
14) Shannon Johnson
15) Vickie Johnson
16) Lisa Leslie
17) Mwadi Mabika
18) Taj McWilliams-Franklin
19) DeLisha Milton-Jones
20) Deanna Nolan
21) Ticha Penicheiro
22) Nykesha Sales
23) Katie Smith
24) Dawn Staley
25) Andrea Stinson
26) Sheryl Swoopes
27) Diana Taurasi
28) Tina Thompson
29) Teresa Weatherspoon
30) Natalie Williams
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