Inside the Numbers:
2006 WNBA Playoffs
The 2006 WNBA season was the most prolific and exciting in the WNBA history. Take a look back at some of the numbers heading into the first round of the Playoffs...
1 The average time for all 238 regulation games is 1:57, just one minute longer than last season’s average length of a game of 1:56 and the same as 2004.
1.76 There were 418 24-second shot clock violations in 238 games this season, an average of 1.76 per game. In 2005, the WNBA averaged 0.70 shot clock violations per game (both teams) with the 30-second shot clock. But during the preseason, teams averaged 2.64 24-second shot clock violations per game, which reveals that teams have adjusted to the new time over the course of the season.
2 Assists are up 2.0 per game, which can be attributed to the shot clock and the increased number of possessions. Or just better passing.
3 Three players averaged 20 points or more per game (Diana Taurasi, Seimone Augustus and Lisa Leslie). There has never been a season in WNBA history that has featured more than two 20-point per game scorers. Also, there has never been a season with more than three players averaging over 19 ppg, and this season featured six, including the aforementioned 20 ppg scorers and Lauren Jackson (19.5), Cappie Pondexter (19.5) and Alana Beard (19.2).
3.4 This year, the number of field goal attempts (fga) were up from 46.0 pg to 49.4 pg, an increase of 3.4 two-point fga per game. Similarly, 3-pt fga are up 3.2 pg from 11.9 to 15.1. With league percentages remaining virtually the same and this increase in shots attempted, the result is one more made three-pointer and almost two more baskets per team/per game.
4 In 2000, the Houston Comets set the record for highest points per game average in a season at 77.3 per game. In 2006, four teams broke that mark: the Phoenix Mercury (87.1), Washington Mystics (80.8), Connecticut Sun (78.9) and Seattle Storm (77.8).
5 All five starters on the Connecticut Sun were All-Stars in 2006.
6 This season, there have been six point totals over 105 points.
7 Last week, Phoenix went 4-0 and averaged 96.5 points per game. The Mercury won its final seven games, averaging over 97 points per game and finished the season with a WNBA record 87.1 points per game average this season. Washington, San Antonio, and Houston also all averaged over 80 points per game last week.
7.9 We saw a lot of scoring in 2006. How much? Scoring this season finished at 75.2 ppg. This is 7.9 points per game/per team more than last season, and set a new WNBA record. It is important to note that the highest scoring average in league history was 70.3 points per game during the 1998 campaign, and that was the only season that the league averaged more than 70 points per game.
8 Diana Taurasi connected on eight 3-pointers in the triple overtime win over the Comets on August 10.
9 Nine players started for the Sacramento Monarchs this season. The Chicago Sky started 14 different players, which was the most in the WNBA. That's deep.
10 Sacramento's DeMya Walker committed a season-high 10 turnovers against the Mercury in the final game of the regular season.
11 The top 11 teams in the league had a home winning percentage of .680 (128-60), while the bottom three teams (NY, CHI, CHR) had a combined winning percentage of .333 (17-34).
12 All 14 teams averaged more points per game than last season’s league average. And of the 14 teams in the WNBA, 12 average more than 70 points per game.
14 Seattle's Sue Bird had 14 assists back on July 1 against the Seattle Monarchs. That was the most assists in a game this season.
15.7 The number of possessions per game increased from 70 per game/per team in 2005 to 77.3 per team this year. Teams shot their first shot 15.7 seconds into the shot clock as opposed to 17.5 seconds last season.
20.5 Free throw attempts increased by 1.4 per team/per game from 19.1 per game to 20.5.
23 Michelle Snow grabbed a league-high 23 rebounds in an overtime game against the Lynx on August 4.
31.7 Turnovers were at 31.7 per game last week, which is slightly above the final season average of 31.4.
32 Assists were at 32.0 per game, which is the same as the season average of 32.0 apg.
33.5 In the 2005-06 NBA season, teams shot .454 percent on all field goal attempts, while the WNBA shot .425 as a league in 2006. The NBA shot .478 percent on two-point fga’s, and the WNBA is shot .452. On 3-point field goal attempts (note NBA line = 23-9; WNBA line = 20-6), the NBA shot .358 compared to the WNBA’s league-wide average of and the WNBA shoots .335 percent.
39.3 Put that whistle away. The WNBA season average for fouls per game was 39.3 fpg.
42.5 Despite the shorter shot clock, the league-wide field goal percentage remained consistent at .425.
55 Sheryl Swoopes played all 55 minutes in the triple overtime loss to the Mercury on August 10.
80 In 2005, WNBA teams scored 80+ points in a game 41 times in 442 opportunities, a frequency of 9.3 percent. In 2006, teams exceeded 80+ points a total of 166 times in 476 point totals, a frequency of 35 percent. Two teams averaged over 80 points per game (Phoenix – 87.1, and Washington – 80.8) this season.
90 With all 238 games concluded, the league registered 57 point totals of 90+ points, while last season featured only five scores of 90 points or greater.
112 On August 3rd, the Mercury scored 112 points in a game, the second highest point total in WNBA history and only two points short of the 114 points the Minnesota Lynx scored on May 31.
221 On August 10th, Diana Taurasi set a WNBA record with 47 points as Phoenix defeated Houston 111-110 in triple overtime, setting the record for most combined points scored in a game.