Lauren Jackson, Becky Hammon Capture 2007 WNBA Peak Performer Honors

-- Jackson Wins Scoring and Rebounding Titles; Hammon Earns Assist Crown --

NEW YORK, Aug. 21, 2007 – Lauren Jackson of the Seattle Storm and Becky Hammon of the San Antonio Silver Stars were named the WNBA Peak Performers for 2007, the league announced today.

WNBA Peak Performer awards are given annually to those players who lead the league in scoring, rebounding and assists during the regular season. In honor of being named WNBA Peak Performers, both Jackson and Hammon will receive trophies specially designed by Tiffany & Co.

Jackson, who was named Western Conference Player of the Week five times this season, earned the Peak Performer award for both scoring and rebounding after averaging 23.8 points and 9.7 boards. She outpaced Seimone Augustus of the Minnesota Lynx (22.6 ppg) for the scoring title and Tamika Catchings of the Indiana Fever to take the rebounding crown (9.0 rpg).

Hammon, with 5.0 assists per game, edged out the Connecticut Sun’s Lindsay Whalen (4.7 apg) for the honor.

Jackson led the league in scoring for the third time in her career, having previously captured the scoring title in 2003 (21.2 ppg) and 2004 (20.5 ppg). Her 23.8 scoring average, which placed her ahead of second-ranked Seimone Augustus (22.6 ppg) this season marked a career-high.

One of the highlights of Jackson’s season came when the seventh-year pro and member of the WNBA’s All-Decade Team registered 47 points at Washington on July 24, tying the league’s single-game scoring mark set by Diana Taurasi just last year. Adding to her fast-growing list of accomplishments, Jackson became the youngest (26 years, 77 days) and fastest (209 games) player in league history to reach the 4,000-point plateau when she poured in 27 against Indiana on July 27.

A model of scoring consistency, Jackson also surpassed Taurasi’s league mark for games of 30+ points in a single season. Jackson’s 32-point outburst against the Los Angeles Sparks on Aug. 17 marked the ninth time this season that she reached the 30-point plateau. The Australian native has established herself as a perennial contender for the scoring Peak Performer award, finishing in the top five in six of her seven seasons in the league.

The forward’s 9.7 rebounds per game also were a career-best and marked the third time she has averaged over nine rebounds during the course of a season. Jackson led the Storm in rebounding 17 times, highlighted by a 17-rebound performance at New York on July 22, just one game after her 47-point effort.

Hammon earned the WNBA assist title for the first time in her career while sparking the Silver Stars’
transformation into a title contender. After being obtained from the New York Liberty in a trade on Draft Day, Hammon went on to post a career-best 5.0 assists per game, nearly double her career average of 2.8. With her performance, the ninth-year pro tied Debbie Black (1999) for second place on the team’s list of single-season assists leaders, trailing only Jennifer Azzi’s 5.3 assists per game in 2001. Hammon, who helped lead the Silver Stars to the No. 2 seed in the WNBA’s Western Conference Playoffs, was named Western Conference Player of the Week twice, including the week ending June 4 when she was honored for back-to-back games in which she dished out nine assists.

2007 WNBA Peak Performers – Final Statistics

Top Five: Scoring Average

Player (Team)
G
FG
FT
PTS
PPG
1. Lauren Jackson (Seattle)
31
258
174
739
23.8
2. Seimone Augustus (Minnesota)
34
296
151
769
22.3
3. Diana Taurasi (Phoenix)
32
206
106
613
19.2
4. Becky Hammon (San Antonio)
28
179
95
527
18.8
5. Alana Beard (Washington)
33
224
127
622
16.3

Top Five: Rebounding Average

Player (Team)
G
OR
ORPG
DR
DRPG
TOT
RPG
1. Lauren Jackson (Seattle)
31
80
2.6
220
7.1
300
9.7
2. Tamika Catchings (Indiana)
21
54
2.6
135
6.4
189
9.0
3. Rebekkah Brunson (Sacramento)
33
130
3.9
165
5.0
295
8.9
4. Candice Dupree (Chicago)
33
79
2.4
175
5.3
254
7.7
5. Nakia Sanford (Washington)
34
100
2.9
142
4.2
242
7.1

Top Five: Assist Average

Player (Team)
G
AST
APG
1. Becky Hammon (San Antonio)
28
140
5.00
2. Lindsay Whalen (Connecticut)
34
169
4.97
3. Sue Bird (Seattle)
29
143
4.93
4. Loree Moore (New York)
34
163
4.79
5. Tamika Catchings (Indiana)
21
98
4.67

About the WNBA
Featuring 13 teams and the greatest female basketball players in the world, the WNBA is the longest-running and most successful women’s professional team sports league in U.S. history. The 2007 WNBA Playoffs tip off on August 23 with complete coverage through the Conference Finals being provided by ABC, ESPN2, ESPN and NBA TV. The 2007 WNBA Finals begin on September 5 and will be televised on ESPN and ESPN2.

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