June 3, 2010
NEW YORK - Lauren Jackson of the Seattle Storm was named the league’s Western Conference Player of the Month presented by Kia Motors for regular-season games played in May.
This marks the first season that Kia Motors, an official marketing partner of the WNBA, has presented the WNBA Western and Eastern Conference Players of the Month award.
Jackson, who was fourth in the WNBA in scoring (20.3 ppg) and tied for tenth in rebounding (8.0) during the month of May, joined Candace Parker as the only players to rank in the top 10 in both categories. The Australia native also tied for the third spot among the league’s shot blockers (2.0 bpg). She also opened the season by winning the WNBA’s Player of the Week presented by Kia Motors award for the Western Conference, tying Lisa Leslie for the most such honors in league history (15).
Jackson, the Storm’s leader in both scoring and rebounding through the first five games, opened the season with 23 points, 10 rebounds, three blocks, two steals and an assist in an 81-67 defeat of the Los Angeles Sparks on May 16. Two games later she had perhaps her best all-around performance of the month in a 95-89 win at Phoenix on May 22, when she logged 25 points, eight rebounds, four steals, two blocks and an assist. Now in her 10th WNBA season, Jackson closed out May with a season-high, 27-point effort in an 84-56 route of the host San Antonio Silver Stars. Jackson led the Storm in scoring and rebounding four times apiece.
Angel McCoughtry of the Atlanta Dream was named the Eastern Conference Player of the Month presented by Kia Motors. McCoughtry and Jackson each led their club to the best start in the history of the franchise. Atlanta won all six of its games to finish the month as the league’s only undefeated team. Seattle posted a 5-1 mark to finish May atop the Western Conference.
McCoughtry led the league in scoring (24.0 ppg) and added 5.8 rebounds, 3.5 assists and 1.5 blocks as the Dream knocked off the defending WNBA champion Phoenix Mercury and the 2009 Eastern Conference champion Indiana Fever, and also earned the club’s first ever win at Madison Square Garden. She also opened the season by winning the WNBA’s Player of the Week presented by Kia Motors award for the Eastern Conference in consecutive weeks.
The WNBA Rookie of the Year in 2009, McCoughtry led the WNBA in scoring in May, averaging 24.0 points per game after scoring in double figures every game and reaching 20-or-more points in five of six contests. The Baltimore native and University of Louisville product closed the month by leading the Dream in scoring in four consecutive games, including a pair of 32-point efforts in a 97-82 win over Connecticut on May 21 and in a 101-82 win at Los Angeles on May 30. She also in tied a career high with 12 field goals made at Los Angeles and set career best figures of five offensive rebounds at Los Angeles and three blocks at San Antonio on May 15.
The WNBA Western and Eastern Conference Players of the Month presented by Kia Motors are part of a series of on-court performance awards called "The WNBA Performance Awards Presented by Kia Motors." The series, currently in its second season, includes four of the WNBA's most prestigious year-end honors: Most Valuable Player, Defensive Player of the Year, Most Improved Player, and Sixth Woman of the Year, along with the WNBA Eastern and Western Conference Players of the Week. Kia Motors has been an official marketing partner of the WNBA since 2008.