After weeks of campaigning, voting and social media blitzes, Tuesday the starters were announced for the WNBA All-Star Game.
While for many pro sports the tradition of the All-Star Game has become simply a reason to take a few days off and has lost almost all its meaning, that isn’t the case in the WNBA. For both the players and fans, it means a great deal more.
For them, it is a way to say thank you for playing so hard even if the stadium is less than half full. For championing a league that still has to deal with way to many haters despite the level of skill on display. For being pioneers and showing the rest of the sports world that yes, gilrs can ball just as well as the men.
For the WNBA, the All-Star game is something very special, and I hope it always stays that way.
As a result, the last few weeks it has seemed like you couldn’t go near social media without getting barraged by teams trying to send their players to Seattle, where the All-Star Game will take place.
And on Tuesday everyone found out if all the hard work paid off as the starters for the 2017 WNBA All-Star Game were announced. One look at the list and you can see it really is the best of the best the WNBA has to offer, with a nice mix of first-timers and perennial All-Stars.
- Tina Charles, New York Liberty
- Elena Delle Donne, Washington Mystics
- Jonquel Jones, Connecticut Sun
- Tiffany Hayes, Atlanta Dream
- Jasmine Thomas, Connecticut Sun
- Sue Bird, Seattle Storm
- Diana Taurasi, Phoenix Mercury
- Maya Moore, Minnesota Lynx
- Candace Parker, Los Angeles Sparks
- Sylvia Fowles, Minnesota Lynx
For Jonquel Jones, Tiffany Hayes and Jasmine Thomas, all of whom are having outstanding seasons, it will be their first trip to the All-Star Game. Sue Bird ties the now retired Tamika Catchings with her 10th All-Star selection, the most in WNBA history.
Over 600,000 fans cast votes this year, almost double the amount that voted last season. All told, Maya Moore led the fan voting with 32,866 votes followed by Elena Delle Donne, Candace Parker and Sylvia Fowles.
The All-Star reserves, who are chosen by the coaches of the WNBA, will be announced July 18 on ESPN2. The 2017 WNBA All-Star Game will be played on July 22 in Seattle and will be telecast on ABC at 3:30 PM EST.