MINNEAPOLIS/ST. PAUL – Minnesota Lynx guard Lindsay Whalen today announced her retirement from the WNBA effective at the conclusion of the 2018 season.
“I would like to announce that after 15 seasons in the WNBA I am going to retire after the 2018 season,” Whalen said. “I would like to thank the WNBA, the Connecticut Sun, and the Minnesota Lynx for believing in me all of these years. I look forward to the next chapter in my basketball career and wish my Lynx coaches and teammates all of the best in the future.”
A four-time WNBA champion, Whalen will finish her career as the Lynx franchise leader in assists while ranking second in games played and fourth in scoring. She holds the single-season franchise record for assists (199, 2011) and the franchise mark for most assists in a single game (14, vs. Los Angeles on September 4, 2013). Acquired by Minnesota in a trade with Connecticut on Jan. 12, 2010, Whalen has appeared in 280 games in a Lynx uniform, averaging 11.5 ppg (on 47.0% shooting), 3.5 rpg and 4.9 apg. The former Golden Gopher and current University of Minnesota Head Women’s Basketball Coach has led the Lynx to wins in 71.4 percent of their games since her arrival, a total of 200 victories over 280 regular season contests. Since 2011, the Lynx are 60-3 when she dishes out seven or more assists in a game.
The Hutchinson, Minn., native will retire as the WNBA’s all-time wins leader, racking up 322 career victories, including 54 in the postseason, which ranks second all-time behind teammate Rebekkah Brunson (57). Whalen ranks third in WNBA history in assists, trailing only Sue Bird and Ticha Penicheiro. Her impressive résumé includes six All-Star appearances, 13 playoff appearances, eight WNBA Finals appearances, four WNBA championships and Olympic gold medals with Team USA in 2012 and 2016. Whalen was the first player in WNBA history with 5000 points, 2000 assists and 1500 rebounds and remains one of just six players to collect 3000 points, 1000 rebounds and 1000 assists in her career. In 2016, she was named to the WNBA’s Top 20@20 Team, honoring the league’s best 20 players as part of its 20th anniversary celebration.
“It has been a privilege and honor to watch Lindsay lead our team to four championships,” said Minnesota Timberwolves and Lynx owner Glen Taylor. “Throughout her 15-year WNBA career she has represented the state of Minnesota with class and dignity and thrilled fans ever since she stepped onto the floor at the University of Minnesota. Lindsay is Minnesota women’s basketball and we congratulate her on an amazing WNBA career and look forward to following her in her next endeavor.”
Whalen not only has led the Lynx to four championships on the court but has served as a champion off the floor as well during her career. For the last three years she has led the Lynx Dream Team and has served as the ACES ambassador. In the last several offseasons, Whalen has made a point to lead various youth basketball clinics throughout the state of Minnesota along with participating in National Girls and Women in Sports Day, sharing her love of basketball with young girls in Minnesota. Recently, Whalen has partnered with the Lynx Fastbreak Foundation to donate a $2,500 grant to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, a cause that she deeply cares about. She has donated hundreds of tickets over the years, teaming up with the Lynx Tickets for Kids program that provides underprivileged youth in the Twin Cities tickets to Lynx games.
“At season’s end Lindsay Whalen will retire as the winningest point guard in the history of the WNBA,” said Head Coach and General Manager Cheryl Reeve. “I feel so fortunate to have been on the sidelines for so many of her wins. Lindsay’s will to win made her special, along with always putting her team and teammates first. I will always cherish the times we spent together over the last eight years bringing championships to her home state of Minnesota.”
Over her 15-year WNBA career, Whalen has appeared in 477 regular season games, averaging 11.5 ppg (on 46.1% shooting), 3.8 rpg and 4.9 apg. Whalen has appeared in 81 career postseason contests, posting averages of 11.7 ppg (on 43.2% shooting), 3.4 rpg and 4.9 apg.
Whalen and Reeve will host a press conference at 1:30 p.m. CT. It will be streamed live at Lynxbasketball.com/live.