Women's Hoops Blog
Jayda Evans covers college and pro women's basketball. While its her first year on the Washington beat, she has covered the Storm since its inception. She'll offer observations, critiques, occasional off-beat tales and answers to select e-mail inquires. Evans also has written a book on the Storm and women's hoops, called "Game On!"
June 2, 2008 12:35 PM
Posted by Jayda Evans
How about those Minnesota Lynx? Just in case you've been in a Storm cloud, the Lynx have shed the not-so-nice nickname of Missing Lynx (get it?) to be the WNBA's sole undefeated team at 4-0. The team continues to ride the play of guard Seimone Augustus and now rookie guard Candice Wiggins, who should have found her way to a Storm uniform.
Anyway, Augustus averaged 22 points and 6.3 rebounds in her team's opening wins, including a stunner against the defending champion Phoenix. The Mercury was 3-1 against the Lynx last season. The POW award for Augustus just caps a fun week for her. She was named to Olympic squad on Saturday, and coach Anne Donovan said "everything begins and ends" with Augustus.
Douglas wasn't named, and like Storm forward Swin Cash, Douglas seems to be using every game to make her case. She's second in league scoring (21.4) and makes you fear what Indiana will do when Tamika Catchings joins the team. Yeah, the Fever is a respectable 3-2 without Catchings. It could barely make a layup, let alone hang in the Eastern Conference without Catch in the past.
One note about the selections, Storm forward Lauren Jackson was nominated instead of Cash this week. Jackson was huge in Seattle's win against San Antonio, scoring 28 points. And she did have a game-high 13 boards in the win against Houston, pulling down the biggest of them all with 10.8 seconds remaining, but where's the love for Cash? She's been the Storm's constant during the franchise-best 5-1 start while Jackson is just starting to emerge into her stellar MVP self. Yet, it's Jackson who has recieved the past two nominations for the Storm.
Well, here's the release from the league:
NAMED WNBA EASTERN AND WESTERN CONFERENCE
PLAYERS OF THE WEEK
NEW YORK, June 2, 2008 -- Katie Douglas of the Indiana Fever and Seimone Augustus of the Minnesota Lynx were named the WNBA Eastern and Western Conference Players of the Week, respectively, for games played Monday, May 26 through Sunday, June 1.
Douglas earns her third career Player of the Week award -- her first as a member of the Fever -- after averaging 19.0 points, 5.0 rebounds and 3.7 assists. After being traded from the Connecticut in the offseason in exchange for Tamika Whitmore, Douglas scored 23 points and pulled in 6 rebounds in the Fever's 75-46 win over the Sun on May 27. Against Los Angeles on May 29, she poured in a game-high 25 points to cap a stretch of four games in which she scored 20 or more points, becoming the second player in franchise history to accomplish the feat (Tamika Catchings, three times). In Indiana's three games, Douglas led the team in assists twice, handing out five against both Connecticut and Detroit.
Douglas propelled the Fever to 2-1 record on the week, including a double-overtime thriller over previously-undefeated Los Angeles on May 29. In her first season with Indiana, Douglas has anchored a Fever squad that has played without Catchings in the early going. She currently ranks second in the WNBA in scoring for the season with 21.4 points per game, trailing only Phoenix's Cappie Pondexter (26.8 ppg).
Augustus receives the second Player of the Week award in her career after averaging 22.0 points, 6.3 rebounds, 2.0 assists and 2.0 steals while shooting 53.3 percent from the floor (24-for-48), 50.0 percent of her three-pointers and 93.8 percent from the foul line.
She highlighted her week with a 25-point, 9-rebound performance while playing 42 minutes in Minnesota's 98-92 overtime win at Houston on May 27. Her nine rebounds against both Houston and Chicago (May 29) tied her previous career-high mark. She was also Minnesota's leading scorer in each of the team's three games in the past week.
A two-time All-Star and former Rookie of the Year, Augustus rallied the Lynx from a 14-point deficit against Houston and sunk the game-tying basket with 25.9 seconds remaining in regulation. To date, she ranks fifth in the WNBA in scoring and among the top 25 in rebounding as a guard. Even more impressive, she's led the Lynx to a franchise-best 4-0 start and a place atop the Western Conference standings. Minnesota is also the only remaining unbeaten team in the WNBA.
Other candidates for WNBA Players of the Week were Chicago's Sylvia Fowles, Connecticut's Lindsey Whalen, Los Angeles' Candace Parker, Phoenix's Cappie Pondexter, Sacramento's Laura Harper, Seattle's Lauren Jackson and Washington's Monique Currie.
About the WNBA
Comprised of 14 teams and entering its 12th season, the WNBA is the longest-running and most successful women's professional team sports league in America. The 2008 season tips off May 17 with ESPN2 again providing appointment viewing in the form of its "WNBA Tuesdays" telecasts. Combined coverage on ABC and ESPN2 will include 21 national telecasts, while NBA TV, the league's 24-hour television network, will offer 70 regular-season contests.
The WNBA is deeply committed to WNBA CARES programs that improve the quality of life for all people, with a special emphasis on promoting health and fitness, breast health awareness, reading and youth basketball programs. For more information on the WNBA, log on to www.wnba.com.
2008 WNBA PLAYER OF THE WEEK WINNERS
Week Ending West Player Team / East Player Team
5/25/08 Sophia Young San Antonio Silver Stars / Lindsay Whalen Connecticut Sun
6/1/08 Seimone Augustus Minnesota Lynx / Katie Douglas Indiana Fever