SPARKS SIGN FREE AGENT GUARD CANDICE WIGGINS

LOS ANGELES –The Los Angeles Sparks have signed veteran free agent guard and former WNBA Champion Candice Wiggins, it was announced today by Executive Vice President and General Manager Penny Toler. Per team policy, terms of the deal were not disclosed.

“It’s been a lifelong dream of mine to play for the Sparks and I am absolutely beside myself with joy and excitement for the incredible opportunity to play in Los Angeles and bring my talent back to California,” said Wiggins. “I'm ready to do whatever it takes to win and bring a WNBA Championship to the city of Los Angeles, and I know this era will truly be a Magic-al one. I’d also like to thank the Shock organization and the wonderful Tulsa fans for an incredible experience last season, it was truly special and unforgettable.”

The 2011 WNBA Champion joins the Sparks for her seventh WNBA season after spending the past six seasons with the Tulsa Shock (2013) and Minnesota Lynx (2008-2012). Acquired by Tulsa in a trade with Minnesota on March 1, 2013, Wiggins started 31 of 32 games played with the Shock, the most starts of her WNBA career. Playing under then head coach and current Sparks assistant coach Gary Kloppenburg, she averaged 10.1 points and a team-high 27.4 minutes per game.

“We are very excited about the addition of Candice Wiggins to the Sparks,” said Toler. “An explosive player at both ends of the court, she will be able to spread the defense as well as defend the best guards on opposing teams. She is a fierce competitor with championship experience and we look forward to having her in Los Angeles.”

The 5-11 guard has averaged double-figures in scoring in four of her six WNBA seasons, including a career-high 15.7 points per game (30 games) during her rookie season in Minnesota (2008). The following season, she played and started all 34 games to average a 13.1 points, 2.6 assists and a career-high 2.9 minutes per game.

Drafted in 2008 as the third overall pick by the Lynx, her impressive scoring (15.7 ppg) for a non-starter was the league’s highest, earning her the WNBA’s 2008 Sixth Woman of the Year Award and a berth on the All-Rookie Team.

During Minnesota’s 2011 Championship run, Wiggins helped spark the offense off the bench in all eight playoff games, including a 10-point performance in the deciding game three of the WNBA Finals.

“I am very anxious to play with Candice,” said Sparks forward Nneka Ogwumike. “I feel, out of all my fellow Stanford women's basketball alumni, I am the only one who hasn't played with her. Now that she’s coming to Los Angeles, I have a wonderful opportunity to play with my fellow ‘Nerdie’. Candice is a spectacular player and will contribute vastly to the Sparks.”

Wiggins is the second Stanford alum on the Sparks roster, joining fellow Cardinal Nneka Ogwumike in Los Angeles. Stanford’s all-time leader in points per game (19.2 points), total points (2,629), career three-pointers made (295), career free throws made (556) and career steals (281), she is a four-time Kodak/WBCA All-American (2005-2008) and 2008 National Player of the Year. In 2008, she passed Sparks legend Lisa Leslie (2,414, USC) as the Pac-10’s all-time leading scorer.

Sparks season and group ticket plans, in all lower-bowl sections of STAPLES Center, are available now by calling 877-44-SPARKS (772757) or visiting LASparks.com.
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