Lynx Re-Sign Two-Time All-Star Seimone Augustus
Augustus, an Olympic Gold Medalist, entered 2010 season as a restricted free agent
MINNEAPOLIS/ST. PAUL – The Minnesota Lynx today announced that the team has re-signed U.S. Olympian Seimone Augustus. Augustus, a two-time WNBA All-Star, entered the 2010 season as a restricted free agent. Per team policy, terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Originally chosen first overall by Minnesota in the 2006 WNBA Draft, Augustus ranks as one of the most prolific scorers in league history. Her career scoring average of 21.2 ppg is tops all-time, besting the likes of WNBA greats Cynthia Cooper (21.0 ppg), Diana Taurasi (20.3 ppg) and Lauren Jackson (19.4 ppg). Augustus holds the third- and fourth-highest single-season point totals in league annals (2007, 769 points; 2006, 744 points). Furthermore, the sharp-shooter recorded 88 consecutive double-figure scoring nights to start her career, the second-longest run of consecutive double-digit games in WNBA history (Cooper, 92). Augustus scored her 2000th career point July 27, 2008 vs. Los Angeles, reaching the mark in her 93rd contest — only Cooper (90) accomplished that feat in fewer games.
"We are extremely pleased to announce the re-signing of one of the world's best players in Seimone Augustus," said Roger Griffith, Lynx Executive Vice President. "She's been one of the WNBA's top scorers from the day she stepped on the court as a rookie in 2006 and we're thrilled that she's chosen to continue her career in a Lynx uniform. Not only is Seimone a tremendous basketball player, she's also a great person and has made a remarkable impact in the Twin Cities community. Her re-signing is the next step in what's shaping up to be an incredible offseason for us. With a healthy Seimone and the additions of Lindsay Whalen, Rebekkah Brunson and the second and third overall picks in the 2010 WNBA Draft to our already existing core, we expect to contend for the WNBA Championship in 2010 and beyond."
"I'm really happy about re-signing with the Lynx," said Augustus. "I love the city of Minneapolis and truly want to thank everyone in the Lynx organization for allowing me to continue my WNBA career here. The fans in Minnesota have been great and I cannot thank them enough for the support they've given me this past year. Obviously last season was tough for me, with my injury, but I am very excited about returning to the court at full-strength this upcoming season. With some of the moves we've made this offseason, adding a veteran point guard in Lindsay Whalen and an experienced power forward in Rebekkah Brunson, 2010 is going to be our year; we expect to make the playoffs and compete for the WNBA Championship."
In 105 career games, all starts, Augustus holds averages of 21.2 points, 3.9 rebounds and 2.1 assists, while shooting .482 percent from field, .379 percent from beyond the three-point arc and .887 percent from the free-throw line. A two-time All-WNBA selection (2006, 2007), Augustus finished no lower than third in the WNBA's scoring race her first three seasons in the league, and her 21.0 ppg in 2009 was third at the time of her season-ending injury: 2006, 21.9 ppg - 3rd; 2007, 22.6 ppg - 2nd; 2008, 19.1 ppg - 3rd. The 2006 WNBA Rookie of the Year, Augustus registered six games with 30 or more points her rookie season, making her the third player in WNBA history to accomplish that feat (Taurasi, Cooper). Additionally, Augustus' scoring average of 21.9 ppg that year stands as the highest mark by a rookie in WNBA history. Annually one of the league's most efficient scorers, Augustus, in 2007, became the first player since 1997 (Cooper and Eva Nemcova) to finish among the league's top 10 in scoring and all three shooting categories -- 4th in field-goal accuracy (50.8 percent), 5th in three-point accuracy (41.9 percent) and 7th in free-throw accuracy (87.3 percent). Augustus finished eighth in the league's Most Valuable Player balloting that year.
Augustus, a three-time WNBA Player of the Week honoree, sits atop the Lynx' record books in a number of scoring categories. Augustus owns Lynx single-season records for most points (769, 2007), most made field goals (296, 2007) and most games with 20 or more points (2007, 23). In addition, Augustus possesses three of the top five single-season scoring averages in team history (2007, 22.6 ppg - 2nd; 2006, 21.9 ppg - 3rd; 2008, 19.1 ppg - 5th). In just 105 games in a Lynx uniform, Augustus ranks 1st in scoring average (21.2), 1st in free-throw accuracy (.887 percent), 2nd in total points (2,230), 2nd in field-goals made (861), 3rd in field-goal percentage - minimum 150 field-goal attempts - (48.2 percent), 4th in three-point field goals made (85), 4th in steals (106) and 4th in blocked shots (54). Augustus' 12 career 30+-point games is tied with Katie Smith for the most in franchise history.
Augustus enters the 2010 season after having her 2009 campaign cut short after suffering a torn anterior cruciate ligament in her left knee June 17, 2009 at Phoenix. Augustus underwent surgery on July 7, and was sidelined for the final 28 games. Prior to the injury, Augustus was putting up MVP-caliber numbers, averaging 21.0 ppg and 4.2 rpg while shooting 57.0 percent from the floor -- including 64.3 percent (9-of-14) from three-point range -- and 90.5 percent from the free throw line while playing 29.7 mpg. Augustus continues to make progress in her rehabilitation from ACL surgery and is on schedule to return to the court prior to the start of the 2010 season.
A longtime participant with USA Basketball, Augustus captured her first Olympic Gold Medal as a member of the U.S. Women’s Basketball Team during the 2008 Winter Olympics in Beijing, China. In the tournament, Augustus averaged 7.9 points (46.6 percent), 2.3 rebounds and 1.4 assists in eight games (17.8 mpg) off the bench for the USA. Augustus was named a member of USA Basketball's 2009-12 Women's National Team on Aug. 17, 2009. A veteran of international competition, Augustus has captured five gold medals, one silver and one bronze medal for Team USA.
Before joining the Lynx in 2006, Augustus enjoyed an illustrious four-year career at LSU, where she led the Lady Tigers to three NCAA Final Four appearances. The Baton Rouge, Louisiana, native took home the Wade Trophy — given annually to the top collegiate player — in 2005 and 2006 and was named Associated Press Player of the Year (2005, 2006), Associated Press All-America (2005, 2006) and SEC Player of the Year (2005, 2006). Augustus finished her collegiate career at LSU as the only player in school history to have at least 2,500 points, 600 rebounds and 250 assists. In recognition of her tremendous career at LSU, the school recently retired the #33 jersey worn by Augustus, making her the first female athlete in school history to receive such honor.
The Minnesota Lynx will tip off the team's 12th season of basketball in the Twin Cities with their Home Opener on Sunday, May 16 at 6:00 p.m. against the Washington Mystics. Lower-level tickets are available for as little as $10 a game for the 17-game home season and can be purchased by calling 612-673-8400, e-mailing email@example.com, or visiting the Lynx website at www.lynxbasketball.com.
For more news and notes on the team follow the Minnesota Lynx on Twitter.