Sisters Chiney and Nneka Ogwumike Headline Reserves For Boost Mobile WNBA All-Star 2014

– Ogwumikes Become First Siblings Ever Selected for Same WNBA All-Star Game –
– Mercury’s Dupree, Arizona State Alum January to Play in Front of Familiar Fan Base –
– Lynx, Sun Contribute Two Reserves Apiece –

NEW YORK, July 15, 2014 – Chiney and Nneka Ogwumike, who in April became only the second set of siblings ever selected with the top overall pick in an American professional sports draft, have again made history. Chiney, the No. 1 overall pick by the Connecticut Sun this year, and Nneka, the No. 1 overall selection by the Los Angeles Sparks in 2012, have been chosen by the league’s head coaches as reserves for Boost Mobile WNBA All-Star 2014, the WNBA announced today. With that, Chiney, who will be making her first All-Star appearance, and Nneka, who will be making her second, become the first pair of sisters ever selected to participate in the WNBA’s All-Star event.

Also highlighting the reserves are former regular-season MVP Tina Charles (2012), former MVP of the WNBA Finals presented by Boost Mobile Seimone Augustus (2011), former All-Star MVP Katie Douglas (2006), and third-year forward Jessica Breland, who is enjoying a stellar 2014 campaign just two years after being out of the league following just one season.

Boost Mobile WNBA All-Star 2014 will take place at US Airways Center in Phoenix on Saturday, July 19, and will be nationally televised on ESPN, with tip-off at 3:30 p.m. ET (12:30 p.m. PT).

For the Eastern Conference, Chiney Ogwumike, Charles of the New York Liberty, Breland of the Chicago Sky, and Erika de Souza of the Atlanta Dream will serve as frontcourt reserves. Douglas of the Sun and Briann January of the Indiana Fever were both voted in as backcourt reserves. Douglas will be making her fifth All-Star appearance and Charles and de Souza their third, while Breland and January will join Chiney Ogwumike in making their All-Star debuts.

Among the reserves for the Western Conference are a pair of two-time WNBA champions from the Minnesota Lynx – backcourt star Augustus and backcourt star Lindsay Whalen. Joining Augustus and Nneka Ogwumike as frontcourt reserves are Candice Dupree of the Phoenix Mercury and Glory Johnson of the Tulsa Shock, while Danielle Robinson of the San Antonio Stars joins Whalen as a reserve in the backcourt. This marks the fifth All-Star appearance for Augustus and the fourth for both Dupree and Whalen, while Johnson and Robinson join Nneka Ogwumike in returning to the All-Star stage for a second time.

Among the Eastern Conference reserves, Charles and Chiney Ogwumike enter Boost Mobile WNBA All-Star 2014 tied for third in the league in double-doubles (8 apiece). Charles also ranks sixth in scoring (17.1 ppg) and fifth in rebounding (9.0 rpg), while Ogwumike ranks seventh in both scoring (15.4 ppg) and rebounding (8.3 rpg), and sixth in blocks (1.3 bpg). Breland, who overcame cancer while at the University of North Carolina, and was out of the WNBA in 2012, is having a career year, averaging 11.8 ppg (more than double her previous best of 5.3 ppg) and 7.7 rpg (nearly double her prior best of 4.0 rpg). De Souza is tied for second in the league in rebounding (9.7 rpg) and ranks 10th in scoring (15.2 ppg), while Douglas – now in her 14th WNBA season – is averaging 13.5 ppg. January is averaging a career-best 11.1 ppg in her sixth WNBA campaign.

For the Western Conference, Johnson sits in fourth place among WNBA rebounders (9.3 rpg) and is 13th in scoring (14.8 ppg). Nneka Ogwumike (15.4 ppg, 7.7 rpg) and Dupree (15.2 ppg, 6.9 rpg) rank among the top 15 in both scoring and rebounding, while Robinson is among the top 10 in both assists (5.2 apg) and steals (1.86 spg). Whalen ranks third in assists (5.6 apg) and 12th in scoring (15.0 ppg), and her Lynx teammate, Augustus, ranked sixth among WNBA scorers (17.2 ppg) prior to sitting out the last six games due to knee bursitis.

The Ogwumike sisters are two of nine former No. 1 overall draft selections on this year’s All-Star rosters. The others include starters Diana Taurasi (2004, by Phoenix), Candace Parker (2008, Los Angeles), Angel McCoughtry (2009, Atlanta), Maya Moore (2011, Minnesota), and Brittney Griner (2013, Phoenix), as well as fellow reserves Augustus (2006, Minnesota) and Charles (2010, Connecticut).

Reserves were chosen by the league’s 12 head coaches. Coaches were not permitted to vote for players on their own team and selected reserves by voting for six players within their own conference, including two guards, three frontcourt players, and one player regardless of position.

Following are the reserves selected for Boost Mobile WNBA All-Star 2014:

Eastern Conference Reserves:
Jessica Breland, Frontcourt (Chicago Sky)
Tina Charles, Frontcourt (New York Liberty)
Erika de Souza, Frontcourt (Atlanta Dream)
Katie Douglas, Backcourt (Connecticut Sun
Briann January, Backcourt (Indiana Fever)
Chiney Ogwumike, Frontcourt (Connecticut Sun)
Western Conference Reserves:
Seimone Augustus, Backcourt (Minnesota Lynx)
Candice Dupree, Frontcourt (Phoenix Mercury)
Glory Johnson, Frontcourt (Tulsa Shock)
Nneka Ogwumike, Frontcourt (Los Angeles Sparks)
Danielle Robinson, Backcourt (San Antonio Stars)
Lindsay Whalen, Backcourt (Minnesota Lynx)

Replacement players, who will take the roster spot of players who cannot play due to injury, will be named by WNBA President Laurel J. Richie. Any changes to the starting lineup necessitated by injury will be made by the head coach of the respective All-Star team.

Under WNBA guidelines, the coach of the previous season's conference champion serves as the All-Star coach for that conference, provided that the coach remains in the same position. Since Fred Williams, head coach of the 2013 Eastern Conference champion Atlanta Dream, is now at the helm in Tulsa, the East head coach – Atlanta’s Michael Cooper – was selected based on the club with the best winning percentage through games on June 29. Cooper earned the honor after guiding his club to an 11-4 mark (.733) at that point in the season. Minnesota Head Coach Cheryl Reeve, who guided the Lynx to the 2013 WNBA title, will lead the West squad.

Individual tickets for Boost Mobile WNBA All-Star 2014 start at just $20 and can be purchased online at PhoenixMercury.com/allstar, through Ticketmaster viaTicketmaster.com, by dialing 800-745-3000, or at the US Airways Center Ticket Office. For every All-Star Game ticket sold, the Mercury will donate $1 to its “All-Stars and Stripes” program benefiting local military heroes and their families.

BOOST MOBILE WNBA ALL-STAR 2014 ROSTERS (alphabetical)

EASTERN CONFERENCE ALL-STARS
Head Coach: Michael Cooper (Atlanta Dream)

PlayerTeamPositionHt.DOBFromYrs.
Jessica Breland^Chicago SkyFrontcourt6-32/23/88North Carolina2
Tamika Catchings*Indiana FeverFrontcourt6-17/21/79Tennessee13
Tina CharlesNew York LibertyFrontcourt6-412/5/88Connecticut4
Elena Delle Donne*Chicago SkyFrontcourt6-59/5/89Delaware1
Erika de SouzaAtlanta DreamFrontcourt6-53/9/82Brazil8
Katie DouglasConnecticut SunBackcourt6-05/7/79Purdue13
Briann January^Indiana FeverBackcourt5-81/11/87Arizona State5
Angel McCoughtry*Atlanta DreamFrontcourt6-19/10/86Louisville5
Chiney Ogwumike^+Connecticut SunFrontcourt6-43/21/92StanfordR
Cappie Pondexter*New York LibertyBackcourt5-91/7/83Rutgers8
Shoni Schimmel*^+Atlanta DreamBackcourt5-95/4/92LouisvilleR

WESTERN CONFERENCE ALL-STARS
Head Coach: Cheryl Reeve (Minnesota Lynx)

PlayerTeamPositionHt.DOBFromYrs.
Seimone AugustusMinnesota LynxBackcourt6-04/30/84LSU8
Skylar Diggins*^Tulsa ShockBackcourt5-98/2/90Notre Dame1
Candice DupreePhoenix MercuryFrontcourt6-28/16/84Temple8
Brittney Griner*Phoenix MercuryFrontcourt6-810/18/90Baylor1
Glory JohnsonTulsa ShockFrontcourt6-37/27/90Tennessee2
Maya Moore*Minnesota LynxFrontcourt6-06/11/89Connecticut3
Nneka OgwumikeLos Angeles SparksFrontcourt 6-27/2/90Stanford2
Candace Parker*Los Angeles SparksFrontcourt6-44/19/86Tennessee6
Danielle RobinsonSan Antonio StarsBackcourt5-95/10/89Oklahoma3
Diana Taurasi*Phoenix MercuryBackcourt6-06/11/82Connecticut10
Lindsay WhalenMinnesota LynxBackcourt5-95/9/82Minnesota10

* denotes member of the starting lineup, as voted by the fans
^ denotes first-time All-Star selection
+ denotes rookie

More »

Video

Postgame: Griner and Taurasi

Brittney Griner and Diana Taurasi speak postgame after the Mercury beat the Lynx in Game 3 to advance to the WNBA Finals.

Postgame: Whalen and Augustus

Lindsay Whalen and Seimone Augustus talk postgame after the Lynx lose to the Mercury in Game 3 of the Western Conference finals.

Postgame: Cheryl Reeve

Lynx head coach Cheryl Reeve talks postgame after Minnesota falls to the Mercury in Game 3.

Postgame: Sandy Brondello

Mercury head coach Sandy Brondello speaks postgame as Phoenix advances to the WNBA Finals after defeating the Lynx in Game 3.

Western Champs Trophy Presentation

The Phoenix Mercury are presented with the 2014 Western Conference champion trophy after defeating the Lynx to advance to the WNBA Finals.