On April 24, 1996, women’s basketball announced “We Got Next” as the NBA Board of Governors approved the concept of a Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA) to begin play in June 1997. Since then, the WNBA has been the home for the best women’s basketball talent in the world. With the league celebrating its 23rd season in 2019, take a look back at WNBA’s bright history.
The Washington Mystics won their first WNBA championship in franchise history as they defeated the Connecticut Sun, 3-2, in the 2019 WNBA Finals. Washington entered the postseason as the No. 1 seed after finishing the regular season with a 26-8 record thanks to a record-setting offense. Emma Meesseman became the first reserve player to earn Finals MVP honors.
More: All-Time WNBA Champions
Erica Wheeler started the weekend as the fifth undrafted player to ever make a WNBA All-Star team. She ended the weekend as the first to win Most Valuable Player honors as she finished with 25 points, seven assists and a record-tying seven 3-pointers to lead Team Wilson to a 129-126 win over Team Delle Donne in the highest scoring WNBA All-Star Game ever.
With their second draft pick since their move to Las Vegas, the Aces selected Notre Dame guard Jackie Young as No. 1 overall in WNBA Draft 2019 at the Nike New York Headquarters.
Washington’s Elena Delle Donne was named the 2019 WNBA Most Valuable Player, becoming the first player to win the honor with two different teams as she won her first in 2015 with the Chicago Sky. In 2019, Delle Donne became the first WNBA player to join the exclusive 50-40-90 Club, as just the ninth player to ever achieve the feat of shooting efficiency.
WNBA20 VIDEO VAULT
To celebrate the league’s 20th season in 2016, WNBA.com gathered elements of the rich history, from the classic games and plays to the iconic players on and off the court. Launch Video Vault
For 23 years the WNBA has featured the game’s best players and created some of the best moments in women’s basketball history. Take a look back at some of the teams and players that have left their mark on this league.