In the days leading up to the New Year, WNBA.com is reliving the best of the league’s landmark 20th season in its 20 Moments of 2016 series. Check back each day from now until December 31 for more!
20 MOMENTS: WNBA Draft | Breanna Stewart’s Debut | Wings’ First Game in Dallas | Mystics-Sun Triple-OT | Lynx-Sparks Round 1 | WNBA Top 20@20 | Taurasi’s 7,000th Point | Hammon’s Jersey Retired | Jackson’s Jersey Retired | EDD vs. Stewie Duel | Olympians Capture Gold | Swin Cash Night | Pondexter Moves to No. 5 in Scoring | So Long, Penny | Stars Celebrate Duo | Tamika’s Farewell | Angel’s Playoff Showcase | Ogwumike Named MVP | Beard’s Finals Buzzer-Beater | An Epic Finale
To celebrate the league’s rich history, the WNBA unveiled on ESPN’s SportsCenter the WNBA Top 20@20 presented by Verizon, a list of the 20 greatest and most influential players in league history.
The announcement followed in the tradition of honoring the game’s greats, as the WNBA had previously recognized an All-Decade team in 2006 and a Top 15 team in 2011.
Putting legends like Sheryl Swoopes, Lisa Leslie and Tina Thompson on the same list is significant enough. But you can’t understand the significance of the WNBA’s 20-year milestone until you hear the current generation talk about the past generations who paved the way.
That’s what stood out most about the Top 20@20: the infusion of past and present. Swoopes, Leslie and Thompson were joined by the likes of Seimone Augustus, Swin Cash, Maya Moore, Candace Parker and Lindsay Whalen. Those five newcomers since the release of the Top 15 list were among the nine active players honored.
Four of the Top 20@20 went on to play in the 2016 WNBA Finals. And at halftime of Game 1, the group was honored in full, receiving rings from WNBA President Lisa Borders.
— WNBA (@WNBA) October 14, 2016