NEW YORK, July 29 –
Connecticut Sun rookie guard Lindsay Whalen
was named to the team of WNBA All-Stars who will take on the U.S. National Team on Thursday, August 5 for “WNBA vs. USA Basketball: The Game at Radio City.” Whalen, who is second in the league in assists per game (5.4), was selected to the team via “Voice of the Fan” on-line balloting conducted on WNBA.com. Balloting ran from Thursday, July 22 through Tuesday, July 27.
“WNBA vs. USA Basketball: The Game at Radio City” will serve as the domestic send-off for the U.S. National Team as it continues its preparations for Athens. ESPN will televise the game nationally on Thursday, August 5 at 7 p.m.
A panel of local and national media named Phoenix Mercury guard Anna DeForge, Los Angeles Sparks guard Nikki Teasley, Connecticut Sun forward Nykesha Sales, Detroit Shock forward Cheryl Ford and Connecticut Sun center Taj McWilliams-Franklin to the WNBA team’s starting lineup on Thursday, July 15.
On Thursday, July 22, head coaches of the 13 WNBA teams selected New York guard Becky Hammon, Detroit guard Deanna Nolan, Charlotte forward Allison Feaster, Los Angeles forward Mwadi Mabika and Indiana center Natalie Williams to join the WNBA All-Star squad, which will be led by Detroit Head Coach Bill Laimbeer and his staff. Detroit center Ruth Riley was originally selected to the team of WNBA All-Stars, but was later named to the U.S. National Team as a replacement for the injured DeLisha Milton-Jones.
Tickets to the “WNBA vs. USA Basketball: The Game at Radio City” can be purchased by calling 1-877-WNBA-TIX, logging on to WNBA.com, or through ticketmaster outlets in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut and ticketmaster.com.
The USA Basketball Women's Senior National Team roster is comprised of Sue Bird (Seattle Storm), Swin Cash (Detroit Shock), Tamika Catchings (Indiana Fever), Yolanda Griffith (Sacramento Monarchs), Shannon Johnson (San Antonio Silver Stars), Lisa Leslie (Los Angeles Sparks), Ruth Riley (Detroit Shock), Katie Smith (Minnesota Lynx), Dawn Staley (Charlotte Sting), Sheryl Swoopes (Houston Comets), Diana Taurasi (Phoenix Mercury) and Tina Thompson (Houston Comets).
The head coach of the U.S. team is Houston Comets Head Coach Van Chancellor. He will be joined on the sidelines by Seattle Storm Head Coach Anne Donovan, Duke Head Coach Gail Goestenkors and Rutgers Head Coach C. Vivian Stringer.
The U.S. capped a successful spring training schedule with an unblemished 13-0 record in its early preparations for Athens. Featuring three separate training sessions, the USA's competition ranged from national and professional club teams to the 2004 WBCA All-Star Team, with games played in six international arenas and four domestic cities.
Ratings for ABC’s and ESPN2’s telecasts of WNBA games are up 21 and 16 percent respectively from a year ago. The season-opening telecast featuring the Phoenix Mercury at the Connecticut Sun was the highest rated WNBA game (regular season or playoffs) ever on ABC, and the July 11 telecast featuring the Mercury at the New York Liberty was the highest rated WNBA regular season game ever on ESPN2.
(Photo: Allen Einstein/NBAE/Getty Images)