Deanna Nolan and Sue Bird Named WNBA Players of the Week

NEW YORK, Aug. 31, 2009Deanna Nolan of the Detroit Shock and Sue Bird of the Seattle Storm were named the WNBA Eastern and Western Conference Players of the Week, respectively, for regular season games played Monday, August 24 through Sunday, August 31.

Deanna Nolan wins the fourth Player of the Week award of her career and first this season after averaging a league-leading 26.7 points on 41.8 percent (28-67) shooting, 3.7 rebounds and 2.7 assists in three games. She led the Shock to a 2-1 record including wins over Eastern Conference rivals Connecticut and Atlanta.

Against the Dream, Nolan set a then-season high with 29 points in Detroit’s four-point win. With the game tied at 79 and 53.6 seconds remaining, Nolan made a jumper off the glass to give the Shock the final lead. She sealed the win with 20.3 seconds left when she sank two free throws to put Detroit ahead by four. One game later, Nolan surpassed her season high with 34 points in Detroit’s road loss to San Antonio. She shot 56.3 percent (9-16) from behind the three-point line in the three games after shooting 23.0 percent (16-71) heading into the week.

Nolan is a four-time All-WNBA selection, a four-time WNBA All-Star and the 2006 WNBA Finals MVP. She’s averaging 16.1 points, which places her in the top 15 among league leaders, 4.1 rebounds and 3.5 assists this season.

Bird earns her third career Player of the Week award and her second in 2009. She averaged 19.3 points, 6.7 assists, 2.3 rebounds and 2.0 steals in three wins this week. Bird helped extend the Storm’s season-long winning streak to five games while securing a sixth-consecutive playoff berth.

Against Atlanta, Bird pushed the game to overtime when she hit a game-tying three pointer with 19.3 seconds remaining in regulation. She then assisted on Camille Little’s game-tying jumper with 5.4 seconds left in the first overtime. Bird scored a season-high 24 points in the game while handing out eight assists. One game prior, she scored 21 points and totaled seven assists against Connecticut.

Bird is a six-time WNBA All-Star, five-time All-WNBA selection and a WNBA All-Decade Team member. She is also a two-time Olympic gold medalist and is second all-time among WNBA assist leaders. Bird is averaging 12.7 points, a league-leading 5.9 assists and 2.5 rebounds in 2009.

Other candidates for WNBA Players of the Week were Atlanta’s Iziane Castro Marques, Phoenix’s Diana Taurasi, Sacramento’s Nicole Powell and San Antonio’s Sophia Young.

About the WNBA
The WNBA is a unique global sports property combining competition, sportsmanship and entertainment value with its status as an icon for social change, achievement and diversity. Comprised of 13 teams, the WNBA is the most successful women’s professional team sports league in the world. The league concluded its historic 12th regular season with increases in attendance, ratings, Web traffic and merchandise sales. The 2009 WNBA season tipped off June 6 on ABC.

Through WNBA Cares, the WNBA is deeply committed to creating programs that improve the quality of life for all people, with a special emphasis on programs that promote a healthy lifestyle and positive body image, increase breast and women’s health awareness, support youth and family development, and focus on education. For more information on the WNBA, log on to www.wnba.com.

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