Rookie Rankings: July 11, 2007

July 11, 2007 -- Throughout the 2007 WNBA season, WNBA.com will run its completely unofficial Rookie Rankings, highlighting the play of the top five rookies to this point. Here's a look at our fourth installment. Do you think we got it right? Be sure to talk about it here in our Fan Voice forums. (All statistics are through the games of July 9.)

No. 1: Lindsey Harding, Minnesota Lynx (1st pick, Duke)
GP
MPG
PPG
FG%
3PM-A
RPG
APG
SPG
BPG
19 30.7 11.9 .350 7-34 4.3 3.8 1.0 0.3
Skinny: Harding narrowly holds on to the No. 1 spot despite the Lynx' troubles of late, losing five straight after Tuesday's defeat at the hands of the Mystics. The Duke alum is still struggling from the field, but as one of the leaders of the young squad in Minnesota, she sees enough of the ball to get her shots and to score with some regularity. They may not win a ton of games this season, but it seems clear that she and sophomore Seimone Augustus will form the WNBA's next dynamic duo.

No. 2: Marta Fernandez, Los Angeles Sparks (free agent, Spain)
GP
MPG
PPG
FG%
3PM-A
RPG
APG
SPG
BPG
18 32.7 11.6 .422 8-31 2.7 3.9 1.5 0.6
Skinny: Like Harding's Lynx, Fernandez's Sparks haven't won much over the last few weeks... in fact, they haven't won at all since topping the Monarchs on June 27. Fernandez posted a career-high 26 in that game and, like Harding, has taken over a leadership role in L.A. given the absence of Lisa Leslie, Chamique Holdsclaw, Temeka Johnson and (to a lesser extent) Taj McWilliams-Franklin. Fernandez is also succeeding at both ends of the court: she is 13th in the league in assists and 11th in steals per game.

No. 3: Armintie Price, Chicago Sky (3rd pick, Mississippi)
GP
MPG
PPG
FG%
3PM-A
RPG
APG
SPG
BPG
18 28.5 8.5 .382 1-2 7.2 3.3 1.4 0.3
Skinny: Price is not your prototypical WNBA scorer... yet. But she does almost everything else on the court extremely well. She is "freaky athletic" as Doris Burke said during Tuesday's ESPN2 telecast and is far and away the top rookie rebounder, standing seventh overall in the league despite standing only 5-9. She's quick, she's an excellent passer, she can play defense and she has a great attitude. If Price can get more comfortable at the offensive end and improve upon her 53.1 percent clip from the free throw line, she's capable of moving up on this list before season's end.

No. 4: Sidney Spencer, Los Angeles Sparks (25th pick, Tennessee)
GP
MPG
PPG
FG%
3PM-A
RPG
APG
SPG
BPG
18 20.8 8.6 .443 28-58 2.9 0.9 0.8 0.4
Skinny: Coach Michael Cooper has moved Spencer into the Sparks' starting lineup of late, and the former Lady Vol has responded. She hasn't played less than 27 minutes since June 20 and has the top field goal percentage of any rookie in the league. Spencer also leads the league -- period -- in 3-point percentage. Provided Spencer continues to get big minutes, she'll be in this rookie race for the long haul.

No. 5: Evanthia Maltsi, Connecticut Sun (free agent, Greece)
GP
MPG
PPG
FG%
3PM-A
RPG
APG
SPG
BPG
10 15.3 5.3 .345 13-30 1.9 1.0 0.6 0.1
Skinny: Who's Evanthia Maltsi and what's she doing on this list? Well, she is a 28-year-old, 5-9 guard from Greece. The Sun signed her after she played this past winter for Bourges Basket, though she is also a veteran of the Greek National Team. Yes, she has only played 10 games for the Sun, starting three, but she can shoot the lights out. She hit 5-5 from 3-point range last Saturday as she posted a season-high 23 points in Connecticut's win over L.A. and is hitting 43.3 percent from long distance. Will she be the Rookie of the Year? Perhaps not. But if she continues to get a chance to play, she could really help the Sun get back into the Eastern playoff chase.

Honorable Mention:
  • Jessica Davenport, New York Liberty (6.1 ppg, 2.8 rpg, 1.2 bpg)
  • Ashley Shields, Houston Comets (6.9 ppg, 1.4 rpg, 1.1 apg)
  • Tiffany Jackson, New York Liberty (4.4 ppg, 2.9 rpg)
  • Camille Little, San Antonio Silver Stars (3.1 ppg, 3.5 rpg, 0.9 spg)
  • Katie Gearlds, Seattle Storm (4.1 ppg, 1.6 rpg, 1.0 apg)
  • More »

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