best of 2014
Here are five noteworthy events from the WNBA regular season:
Oh, Maya: Maya Moore raised her game to a new level this season, leading the league in scoring with 23.9 points a game. She scored 30 points or more in four straight games and surpassed that mark 12 times this season. Both are WNBA records. Her greatest game though, was a 48-point effort in a double-overtime win over Atlanta in late July. That was the second-highest scoring effort in a single game in league history.
Sister act: Nneka and Chiney Ogwumike squared off on the court for the first time in their careers. Nneka earned family bragging rights as her Los Angeles Sparks came away with a pair of victories over Chiney and the Connecticut Sun. It was one of a handful of sister matchups in the history of the WNBA, according to the league.
Shoni time: Atlanta rookie Shoni Schimmel turned the All-Star Game into her own personal showcase, scoring a league-record 29 points and handing out eight assists to lead the Eastern Conference to a 125-124 victory in the event’s first overtime game. Schimmel was hitting shots from all over the court and outdueled Skylar Diggins, who put up 27 points for the West.
Streaking Mercury: Phoenix won a league-record 29 games and rattled off 16 consecutive victories, the second-longest streak in league history. Led by Diana Taurasi and Britney Griner, the Mercury didn’t lose from June 15 until July 31, when the streak ended at Target Center. Phoenix fell just short of Los Angeles’ record 18-game run in 2001. The Mercury got a small measure of revenge, ending the Lynx’s 11-game winning streak nine days later in Phoenix.
Farewell season: San Antonio Stars guard Becky Hammon, a seven-time All-Star, is retiring at the end of the season following a 16-year career. She was undrafted out of Colorado State. She will join the San Antonio Spurs and become the first full-time female assistant coach in the NBA, but her historic new career will have to wait at least a week longer.