WNBA All-Star 2013 Blog



Check out all the behind the scenes footage from the fun-filled weekend
Jul 27 2013 7:24PM


Parker's 23 Points Sets a WNBA Record for Most Points in an All-Star Game
Parker Crowned MVP After Record-Setting Game
Jesse D. Garrabrant /NBAE/Getty Images
Jul 27 2013 5:48PM
Candace Parker was crowned MVP of the 2013 WNBA All-Star game setting a scoring record of 23 points in the star-studded matchup.

"It was a lot of fun playing with everybody," she said moments before hoisting the trophy over her head. "Everybody here is so talented and that's what this weekend is about."

Parker's monster stat line for the evening was 23 points and 11 rebounds that included 10-13 shooting from field goal range.

Swin Cash of the Chicago Sky previously held the record for her 22-point performance in 2009.
Check out why All-Star decided to design her dope kicks for today's game
Jul 27 2013 4:53PM
Get an up close look at the game's opening tip.
Jul 27 2013 4:20PM
Glory Johnson and Candace Parker Dunk During Warmups
Jul 27 2013 3:54PM
The WNBA All-Stars put on a show for the fans as they geared up for today's game. Check out the air Tulsa Shock's Glory Johnson got on her high flying dunk that brought the crowd to their feet.

Candace Parker, the second player in WNBA history to dunk in a game, showed fans she's still got it putting down a jam of her own.

The WNBA President said the league is off to a great start midway into the season.
Richie Excited for All-Star Game
NBAE/Getty Images
Jul 27 2013 2:56PM
WNBA President Laurel Richie said she's excited for today's All-Star game saying "I think we're going to have a fun afternoon."

"It's very reflective of the 17th season of the WNBA," she said. "We have a wonderful mix of rookies and firstimers and many of our veterans coming back."

Also worth noting, she said, is West Coach Cheryl Reeve and East Coach Lin Dunn mark the first time two females have coached the game.

"As the longest running women's professional sports league in the country, that's a nice addition to our stats,"

During her pre-game press conference, Richie said she was also pleased with how the league was progressing from a business standpoint. So far this season, Richie said compared to last year game attendance is up 2.3 percent, viewership on ESPN2 and NBATV is up in double digits, LiveAccess subscriptions are up and the league's site and video traffic is too.

"Between the response to our fans this season and the welcoming of new sponsors, we're really excited," she said.
Seven first-time All-Stars will take the court today.
First Timers Ready to Play
David Dow/NBAE/Getty Images
Jul 27 2013 2:29PM
We’re approaching tip off for the 2013 Boost Mobile WNBA All-Star Game where seven first-time All-Stars will take the floor.

In the West locker room, the team was relaxed and focused on going out and enjoying the game.

Trying to “have fun” and “it’s for the fans” were the common refrains, but rest assured, these players are not about to roll over for the East.

“I always want to get a win,” Glory Johnson said. “I’m a little too competitive to just go out there and play so in the back of my mind I’m always out there for the win.”

It’s also about having pride in your conference.

"You gotta represent for the West," Danielle Robinson said. "Looking forward to going out there and showing what the West is all about."
The All-Star guard arrives today fired up for tonight's game and the second half of the season that will follow.
Mercury Weathering the Injury Storm
David Dow/NBAE/Getty Images
Jul 27 2013 1:26PM
Despite all the injuries that have slowed down the Phoenix Mercury's run this season, Diana Taurasi is the engine that keeps her team moving forward.

"When you're not healthy, you have to plug a lot of holes," Taurasi said. "And this first half of the season we've had to plug a lot of holes. Hopefully in this second half of the season we can get healthy and get rolling again."

Mercury center Brittney Griner has been sidelined for several games this season with injuries. Penny Taylor, who missed all of last season with a left knee injury, just underwent surgery on her right knee and could miss the rest of this season too.

But despite all that, Taurasi has kept the Mercury's reputation as being one of the league's toughest teams to stop intact this season. And that will only improve once they overcome their injury bugs, she said.

"There's a couple of key components that will help us win some games and that's obviously defensive rebounding," she said. "When Brittney's back that will really help and try to get back into our running game. Those two things go hand in hand."
Nine first-time All-Stars were selected to the Boost Mobile All-Star Game.
A Changing of the Guard?
Brian Babineau/NBAE/Getty Images
Jul 27 2013 12:37AM
The 2013 Boost Mobile WNBA All-Star Game features nine first-time All-Stars, one shy of an all-time record. The 2013 WNBA season was billed from the start as the beginning of a new age for the WNBA and the influx of new faces at All-Star Weekend validates that.

"Now I’m looking at Diana Taurasi and Candace Parker because all of a sudden these are the vets," Minnesota coach Cheryl Reeve said. "One, It makes you feel old. But two, it’s the official changing of the guard.

"You can feel it happening, but now it’s official."
The game tips off today at 3:30 p.m. ET. Watch on ABC.
Jul 27 2013 12:17AM
Jared Greenberg reports from the Mohegan Sun Arena as the East and West prepare to clash in this season's All-Star Game.

In her final season, WNBA legend Tina Thompson received a much deserved All-Star nod.
Thompson Continues to Stand Out
Jesse D. Garrabrant /NBAE/Getty Images
Jul 27 2013 11:20AM
UNCASVILLE, Conn -- There’s a certain measure of symmetry in place.

With the WNBA’s next big thing, the No. 1 overall pick in the 2013 WNBA Draft Brittney Griner forced to sit out of the 2013 Boost Mobile WNBA All-Star Game due to an injury, it was the WNBA’s first big thing, the first ever WNBA draftee, Tina Thompson, who was chosen to replace her.

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For the second time in team history, the Minnesota Lynx have four All-Stars.
Jul 27 2013 9:13AM
The Minnesota Lynx last played on Wednesday, defeating the Phoenix Mercury to close out their first half with a league-best 14-3 record. The fans and coaches rewarded the team's stellar first half and as a result, the West team, which contains four Lynx players and also the Minnesota coaching staff (due to Minnesota's trip to the WNBA Finals last year) will have a decidedly Minnesota feel.

"We’ve been saying the Lynx are taking over Mohegan Sun," Minnesota coach Cheryl Reeve said. "It’s one of those things where to be a part a part of an All-Star game is such a great honor. And to do it with the players that got you here, I mean, they’re the reason we’re here. And I’ve got such a great staff. I feel very blessed."

Minnesota will be represented by Seimone Augustus, Rebekkah Brunson, Maya Moore and Lindsay Whalen. Augusts, Brunson and Moore will be starting, the first time the organization has featured three starters.

This will be just the seventh time -- and second time in as many All-Star Games for Minnesota -- that a team has had four or more All-Stars.

Moore, the No. 1 pick in the 2011 WNBA Draft, said she realizes how much of a fortunate situation she was drafted into.

"It’s a blessing to come here and not only have three of my teammates, but three really good quality people here," Moore said. "They’ve done so much for the game and lead our team really well. I was so blessed to come in as a young player and have them carry a lot of the load and me just come in and add to it, so I’ve been able to learn a lot from them. Being able to celebrate that with them here, it’s a lot of fun."

Brunson, making her third All-Star Game appearance, says she is happy for the coaches to participate this time around.

"Last time we actually had all four of the same players but not the coaches," Brunson said. "So now we have the coaches here and they deserve it too. They’ve done a lot of work. They get us to the places where we are because you can look around the league and see a lot of teams who are stacked with really good players. But we seem to continually be able to win, and that’s because of those guys."
Selected to her sixth All-Star Game, Diana Taurasi says the weekend is still special for her.
Jul 26 2013 11:27PM
A pair of Rutgers alums comprise the starting backcourt for the East.
A College Connection
Jesse D. Garrabrant /NBAE/Getty Images
Jul 26 2013 6:09PM
As a senior at Rutgers, New York's Cappie Pondexter helped recruit Chicago's Epiphanny Prince. While their time under legendary coach C. Vivian Stringer did not overlap, the Rutgers duo will team up on Saturday as they represent the starting backcourt for the East All-Star team.

"I was recruiting her to come to Rutgers and she came to Rutgers and now we're playing professionally, usually against each," Pondexter said. "But to get the opportunity to play together and start is kind of cool." .

Prince confirmed that Pondexter had an influence on her college decision.

"When I committed to go to Rutgers, the way (Pondexter) played and what coach Stringer did with her was one of the reasons," Prince said.

Both high-scoring guards listed at 5-foot-9, many say Prince and Pondexter have similar overall games. The players agree.

"She's a very skilled player, kind of like myself," Pondexter said of Prince. "Not as quick in transition, but she's very crafty. Her handles are exceptional. She's a great shooter, a great catch-and-shoot player, can take you off the bounce. She does a lot of great things. I admire her game."

"I think she's a little bit more explosive than me," Prince said. "Her game is more veteran. I'm still learning a lot, but I can see the comparison that people say."

Alma maters aside, the similarities may also derive from what Pondexter called "New York swag."

"There's something about New York ballers," Prince said. "We come with a swag where we thing nobody can stop us."
Ivory Latta put on a show for the fans in Connecticut.
A Lot of Latta in Connecticut
Brian Babineau/NBAE/Getty Images
Jul 26 2013 4:56PM
Practice was open to fans and media today and the East squad finished off its session much like many WNBA teams do, with a halfcourt shot competition.

Each player missed on their first attempt, but Washington's Ivory Latta stepped up and confidently nailed her second attempt.

If you ask her, it was no big deal.

"It's natural. It's my time. OK?" joked Latta. "I didn't want Catchings to win. To be real honest, I didn't.

No, I'm just messing. It's all fun and games."

After the shot went down, Latta, one of the more outgoing players here in Connecticut, did a little shuffle for the crowd.

"That's like the East All-Star dance," the first time All-Star said. "I really don't know what that was, but it just came out. I'm having a great time. That's what I love to do. Crowd is into it. Crowd is having fun. Everybody is having fun."

Latta also provided some entertaining analysis of the halfcourt competition.

Team is hungry for redemption, Toliver says.
Sparks Out for Revenge This Season
NBAE/Getty Images
Jul 26 2013 5:18PM
UNCASVILLE, CONN. - After a painful playoff loss to the Minnesota Lynx last season, Los Angeles Sparks guard Kristi Toliver said her squad has used that moment to fuel their fire this season especially when they routed Minnesota 87-59 last month.

"It was the first time we played Minnesota this season and we were very mindful of how the season ended last year," she said. "I mean they beat us on our home court and we came back (this season) and responded."

She described playing the Western Conference teams this season as a "physical bloodbath," especially going against the Lynx and the Phoenix Mercury. Toliver said the team is pulling no punches against the two teams this season treating each regular season game against them like do-or-die playoff matches.

"We are very mindful of going into the playoffs that we're going to meet one of those two teams for sure," she said. "It's nice to get those games in now in the regular season to see where we are and then see where we'll be."

The first time All-Star has always been known for being a deadly three-point shooter and said she's been trying to work on her game this season to make herself even more of a threat. Bringing in point guard Lindsey Harding this season, she said, has given her more freedom to get buckets now that she doesn't have to take on as much of the point guard role.

"Last year I had the ball in my hands a lot so I had to create my own shots," she said. "Now I have the freedom to move around and be more creative. Offensively I'm just trying to be unpredictable. Not just relying on my outside shot, but getting into the paint and using my mid-range game to make me unpredictable. In the offseason that's what I was working on."
One of the league's best players wants the award to back it up.
Parker Wants the MVP
NBAE/Getty Images
Jul 26 2013 4:29PM
UNCASVILLE, CONN. - Candace Parker is in midst of her prime playing some of the best basketball of her career right now. In addition to winning a championship this season, there's one more piece of hardware she has her sights on - the Most Valuable Player award. She said winning the award would be a redeeming moment for all the obstacles she's had to overcome in her career.

"As a competitor, of course that's something that would be nice," she said. "To come back from having a baby, to come back from as many injuries as I've had to do that. I think the WNBA is one of the best leagues, if not the best, in the world, so yeah of course winning the award would be nice."

Parker has always been one of the league's best players, earning both the Rookie of the Year and MVP award in 2008. But last season was the first full season she has played since then. This year, she's been able to step her game up even higher of a notch by making her teammates better and not having to rely on scoring to dominate a game.

"I've always enjoyed passing but before I was letting the game come to me," Parker said. "Now I'm at a point in my career where I can dictate the game. Dictate what the defense does and make adjustments based on that."
The No. 1 overall pick in the 2013 WNBA Draft revealed that she has a hidden talent off the court.
Brittney Griner Has
NBAE via Getty Images
Jul 26 2013 4:18PM
Even though Brittney Griner is missing the Boost Mobile All-Star Game due to injury, that hasn't stopped her from engaging in a little friendly competition while in Connecticut.

Film crews captured Griner, the No. 1 overall pick in this past year's WNBA Draft, performing what can only be deemed a hidden talent as she was able to fit 13 marshmallows in her mouth at one time. And we're not talking mini marshmallows.

"She must have super enzymes," Minnesota's Maya Moore said of the feat.

For all important context, the No. 1 overall pick in the 2012 WNBA Draft, Nneka Ogwumike, was only able hold off laughter and fit six marshmallows.
Boredom Helped Me Make the All-Star team, Johnson Joked
NBAE/Getty Images
Jul 26 2013 12:24AM
NEW LONDON, Conn. - When asked about the tremendous improvement in her game this season, All-Star Glory Johnson quipped about crediting her success to being bored while playing basketball abroad in the offseason.

"There was really nothing to do," she said with a laugh. "I was in Russia and I was usually just inside the gym. That built a lot of confidence knowing what I can do when I was putting that extra time in the gym. And I was doing it well so I wanted to bring that to the WNBA and it worked out."

The sophomore forward for the Tulsa Shock had a solid rookie year but has really stepped it up this season as one of the league's under-the-radar success stories. She's racked up 10 double-doubles so far (2nd in the league) and is averaging 16.4 points and 10.2 rebounds per game this season. She was named as a reserve on the Western Conference All-Star team - her first appearance on the squad.

Johnson was at Bennie Dover Jackson Middle School in Connecticut Friday morning for a WNBA Cares event as many of this weekend's all-stars put on basketball clinics for a local group of summer campers.
Take a look at some of the most intriguing stats from this year's All-Stars.
Breaking Down the All-Stars
NBAE via Getty Images
Jul 26 2013 9:31AM
With the 2013 WNBA All-Star Weekend upon us, which players and teams are making waves? Take a closer look at the stats and compare.

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Here's what you should know heading into All-Star Weekend.
Seven Storylines For All-Star Weekend
NBAE via Getty Images
Jul 26 2013 9:19AM
The stars are descending on Connecticut this weekend and there are numerous intriguing storylines to keep an eye out for. Check some of them out in this photo gallery.

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The WNBA legend, who plans to retire after the season, will play in one more All-Star Game.
Thompson to Replace Griner
NBAE via Getty Images
Jul 25 2013 9:28PM
Seattle Storm forward Tina Thompson – the WNBA’s all-time career scoring leader, a four-time WNBA champion, and the only player to have participated in every WNBA season – has been named as a replacement player for Boost Mobile WNBA All-Star 2013.

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Tina Charles headlines a group of All-Star reserves.
All-Star Reserves Announced
Chris Marion/NBAE/Getty Images
Jul 24 2013 5:56PM
In addition to rookies Elena Delle Donne and Brittney Griner, who last week were voted by fans as starters for the Boost Mobile WNBA All-Star Game, seven other players have been chosen by the league’s coaches to make their first All-Star appearances as reserves, the WNBA announced today.

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Video

All-Access: 2013 WNBA All-Star Game

Get your all-access pass to the festivities at the 2013 WNBA All-Star Game from Mohegan Sun in Connecticut.

WNBA All-Star 2013: Pre-Game Dunk Fest

Check out the pre-game dunk fest from the 2013 WNBA All-Star Game.

Maya Moore: Worm On the Fly

West All-Star Maya Moore says she just had to come up with something special for the fans at the 2013 WNBA All-Star Game.

Candace Parker's MVP Presentation

Candace Parker is presented with the 2013 WNBA All-Star Most Valuable Player trophy.

Angel Flexes For the Camera

Atlanta's Angel McCoughtry gives the fans a little something extra after a powerful rebound and putback during the 2013 All-Star Game.