|Elena Delle Donne *||F||6-5||Mystics||18.7||6.2||1.6||4|
|HEAD COACH:||Curt Miller (Connecticut Sun)|
|ASST. COACHES:||Steve Smith (Connecticut Sun)|
|Nicki Collen (Connecticut Sun)|
|ATHLETIC TRAINER:||Tom Spencer (Seattle Storm)|
|Brittney Griner *||C||6-9||Mercury||22.3||8.2||2.0||4|
|HEAD COACH:||Cheryle Reeve (Minnesota Lynx)|
|ASST. COACHES:||Shelley Patterson (Minnesota Lynx)|
|James Wade (Minnesota Lynx)b|
|ATHLETIC TRAINER:||Chuck Barta (Minnesota Lynx)|
The Western Conference All-Stars are made up of some of the biggest names in WNBA history. Sue Bird, a member of the Seattle Storm since 2002, makes her league record-tying 10th appearance in the All-Star festivities. In addition to playing in the game, Bird will also showcase her range in the three-point contest. Diana Taurasi, the league’s all-time leader in points, will don an All-Star jersey for the eighth time. Maya Moore and Sylvia Fowles of the first place Minnesota Lynx will both start for the West, as will Candace Parker of Los Angeles, who earns her fourth All-Star nod.
Off the bench, the West still features some household names. Reigning MVP and WNBA champion Nneka Ogwumike is in the game for her fourth time, as is four-time champion Rebekkah Brunson. Seimone Augustus gives Minnesota four All-Stars and gives the former LSU standout her seventh trip to an All-Star game. Skylar Diggins-Smith and her 18.2 points-per-game average serves as the lone representative of the Dallas Wings. The West’s bench is rounded out by two first timers in Seattle’s Breanna Stewart, the reigning WNBA Rookie of the Year, and Los Angeles’ Chelsea Gray.
The Eastern Conference roster is littered with players getting their first tastes of life as an All-Star. A trio of Connecticut Sun players (Jasmine Thomas, Jonquel Jones, Alyssa Thomas) is making their first journey into the world of the WNBA All-Star Game. The Atlanta Dream is also sending a triumvirate of first-time All-Stars, with Tiffany Hayes, Layshia Clarendon, and Elizabeth Williams all making the squad. Candice Dupree (sixth selection) and Tina Charles (fifth selection) are the so-called veterans of the East team and the only members of the roster to appear in more than three All-Star weekends.
Two key contributors to the Chicago Sky – Allie Quigley and Stefanie Dolson – are joining in on the fun in Seattle. Dolson is one of just three players on the East side who has been tabbed as an All-Star before. Sugar Rodgers, a guard for the New York Liberty, was recently named as the replacement for Elena Delle Donne, the Washington Mystics star who was named a starter but is currently sidelined by an injury. Rodgers is one of eight players in an East uniform who is in their first All-Star Game.
During an extended halftime period, five of the All-Stars will put their shooting touch on display for the KeyArena crowd. The winner of the contest, which is being held for the first time since 2009, will receive $10,000 to donate to a charity of their choice. The top three shooters from the first round will move on to the championship and get a chance to compete for the prize. Each participant will shoot from five different spots around the arc. Four of the racks will have the traditional four regular balls, one “money ball” set up. Additionally, each contestant will get to choose where to place a rack consisting entirely of “money balls”, with each of them worth two points.
Here are the players set to let it fly from the three-point line on Saturday:
The Western Conference has won nine of the 13 All-Star Games in league history. There have been five years (2004, 2008, 2010, 2012, 2016) in which traditional All-Star Games were not held. In 2004, the USA National Team played a team of WNBA All-Stars in an event that is not considered a true All-Star Game. In 2008, 2012 and 2016, there were no All-Star Games held due to players traveling for the Olympics. The 2010 season also featured a Team USA vs. WNBA All-Star format in what was not considered by the league to be an All-Star Game.
In the most recent East vs. West matchup, the West won 117-112 in the 2015 rendezvous at Mohegan Sun Arena in Connecticut. Maya Moore, a member of this year’s West team, earned MVP honors by scoring 30 points. Candace Parker, a starter for the 2017 edition of the West All-Stars, took home the MVP distinction after the 2013 game in Connecticut. Lisa Leslie holds the record with three All-Star Game MVP awards. Cheryl Reeve of the Minnesota Lynx is coaching in her third All-Star Game. She has a 1-1 record coming into Saturday. Curt Miller of the Connecticut Sun, who replaced Bill Laimbeer, is handling his first All-Star game duties as a head coach.
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