ESPN, NBA TV to Televise WNBA's Deepest Collegiate Draft Class Ever

2004 WNBA Draft Scheduled for April 17

NEW YORK, March 11 – The WNBA announced today that the 2004 WNBA Draft will be held Saturday, April 17 beginning at noon ET at the NBA Entertainment studios in Secaucus, New Jersey. For the first time, ESPN will televise the first round of the draft, leading into its coverage of the 2004 NBA Playoffs. NBA TV, WNBA.com and ESPN.com will cover all three rounds, providing complete analysis and comprehensive information on all 13 teams’ selections.

For the first time ever, the WNBA Draft will also enjoy extensive Spanish language coverage on Telemundo and its cable sister station mun2. Exclusive in-language reports will also be featured online on NBA.com/espanol.

WNBA.com’s pre-draft coverage begins in mid-March, and will include a game-by-game prospect tracker, prospect analysis from NBA TV’s Rebecca Lobo and Washington Mystics forward and ESPN analyst Stacey Dales-Schuman, current WNBA players’ NCAA memories and insider reports from WNBA Pre-Draft Camp.

The Phoenix Mercury has the first overall selection in the draft by virtue of winning the WNBA Draft Lottery held on Dec. 3, 2003. The Washington Mystics have the second pick in the draft, and the Charlotte Sting acquired the third pick in a trade with the Indiana Fever that saw the Sting send Kelly Miller and the ninth selection in the draft to Indiana for the third and 18th picks.

This year’s draft class is headed by UConn forward Diana Taurasi and Duke guard/forward Alana Beard. Taurasi has led the Huskies to back-to-back NCAA titles and was the 2003 consensus player of the year. Beard recently became the Blue Devils’ all-time leading scorer, and the first player in ACC history to be named to the all-league first team four years in a row.

Other top players in the draft are Penn State guard Kelly Mazzante, Kansas State forward Nicole Ohlde, Stanford forward Nicole Powell, Minnesota guard Lindsay Whalen and Purdue forward Shereka Wright. Mazzante is the all-time leading scorer in Big Ten history, and is a two-time Big Ten Player of the Year. Ohlde is the Wildcats’ all-time leading scorer, rebounder and shot-blocker as well as a second-team academic All-American.

Powell was named the Pac-10 Player of the Year and has six triple-doubles on her Cardinal resume. She ended the 2003-04 regular season as one of only two Pac-10 players to average a point-rebound double-double, and she also became the fourth player in Pac-10 history to earn all-conference honors all four years. Whalen is Minnesota’s all-time leading scorer and averaged 5.0 rebounds and 4.8 assists during the regular season, while Wright led the Big Ten in scoring in conference games, earning All-Big Ten first-team honors for the third consecutive year in the process.

The WNBA will tip off its eighth season Thursday, May 20 with three Western Conference games featuring San Antonio against the Comets at the Compaq Center, the Sacramento Monarchs vs. Phoenix at America West Arena and the Seattle Storm hosting the Minnesota Lynx at Key Arena.

ABC will air the first of seven regular season Saturday afternoon games on May 22, as the Connecticut Sun hosts Phoenix at 4 p.m. EDT. On May 29, ABC will televise a rematch of last year’s WNBA Finals with the Los Angeles Sparks traveling to Detroit to take on the Shock at 4 p.m.

ESPN2 will televise 10 regular season contests in 2004, with the Oxygen network telecasting five regular season games and Telemundo showing up to 10 additional games. NBA TV will televise 40 regular season and playoff contests. The league’s 24-hour television network is available to 66 million homes in the U.S. and in 39 other countries.

For the fourth consecutive season, more than 2 million fans attended WNBA games in 2003, and a WNBA-record 22,076 fans attended Game 3 of the WNBA Finals at The Palace of Auburn Hills to see the Detroit Shock capture its first WNBA Championship.

The current 2004 draft order follows.

2004 COLLEGE DRAFT LIST
First Round

1. Phoenix (8-26)
2. Washington (9-25)
3. Charlotte from Indiana (16-18) (K. Miller, 2/5/04)
4. Connecticut from San Antonio (12-22) (S. Johnson, 1/28/04)
5. New York (16-18)
6. Seattle (18-16)
7. Minnesota (18-16)
8. Connecticut (18-16)
9. Indiana from Charlotte (18-16) (K. Miller, 2/5/04)
10. Sacramento (19-15)
11. Detroit from Houston (20-14) (Holland-Corn, 2/17/04)
12. Los Angeles (24-10)
13. Detroit (25-9)

Second Round
1. Phoenix (8-26)
2. Washington (9-25)
3. Connecticut from San Antonio (12-22) (S. Johnson, 1/28/04)
4. New York (16-18)
5. Charlotte from Indiana (16-18) (K. Miller, 2/5/04)
6. Seattle (18-16)
7. Minnesota (18-16)
8. San Antonio from Connecticut (18-16) (S. Johnson, 1/28/04)
9. Charlotte (18-16)
10. Detroit from Sacramento (19-15) (Holland-Corn/Lawson, 3/29/03)
11. Connecticut from Houston (20-14) (Dispersal Pick, 1/5/04)
12. Los Angeles (24-10)
13. Houston from Detroit (25-9) (Holland-Corn, 2/17/04)

Third Round
1. Phoenix (8-26)
2. Washington (9-25)
3. Connecticut from San Antonio (12-22) (S. Johnson, 1/28/04)
4. New York (16-18)
5. Indiana (16-18)
6. Detroit from Houston from Seattle (18-16) (R. Williams, 5/20/03) (Holland-Corn, 2/17/04)
7. Minnesota (18-16)
8. San Antonio from Connecticut (18-16) (S. Johnson, 1/28/04)
9. Charlotte (18-16)
10. Sacramento (19-15)
11. Houston (20-14)
12. Minnesota from Detroit (25-9) (Moore, 5/19/03)

More »

Video

Sun vs. Dream

Angel McCoughtry scores 25 points, Tiffany Hayes adds 23 points as the Dream snap their four-game losing streak with a win over the Sun.

Fever vs. Sparks

Nneka Ogwumike scores 21 points and Alana Beard adds 17 to help the Sparks beat the Fever, 77-73.

Sky vs. Shock

Odyssey Sims scores 24 points to lead the Shock to a win over the Sky, 79-69.

Lynx vs. Sun

Maya Moore scores 17 points to help the Lynx beat the Sun, 76-65.

Dream vs. Mystics

Ivory Latta scores 21 points and Kara Lawson adds14 as the surging Mystics beat the Dream, 77-67.