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Women's Hoops

The latest news and analysis on college and pro women's basketball.

June 1, 2006 at 11:10 AM

My picks

Now that voting is closed, I thought I’d release my picks for the All-Decade team. I didn’t struggle as much as most did, until it came down to the 10th pick, which was basically between former New York Liberty guard Teresa Weatherspoon and current Phoenix guard Diana Taurasi.
The argument most peers made was you don’t want to look back on an All-Decade team and not have Taurasi on it because of the incredible talent she is and the potential she has to really shine in the WNBA. The example is Shaquille O’Neal when the NBA announced its top-50 players in 1996, placing the current Miami center on the list although he had only competed in the league for four seasons.
But Shaq was a visible behemoth, averaging nearly 30 points in Orlando, and was obviously going to change the game. Taurasi, while exciting to watch, isn’t changing the game.
She’s versatile, but so is Indiana forward Tamika Catchings. Taurasi can score, but so can Los Angeles forward Chamique Holdsclaw. And Taurasi has brought in a legion of fans and media hype, but Storm guard Sue Bird did so first, and lived up to it by getting her team to the playoffs her rookie season, winning a championship her third season, and being selected as a perennial All-Star starter by fans.
So, you guessed it. Taurasi didn’t make my list.
Here are my selections in no particular order:
• Seattle G Sue Bird — The best WNBA point guard on the list of 30 nominees. You have to have all five positions represented, in my opinion.
• Seattle F Lauren Jackson — Needs no explanation.
• Houston F Sheryl Swoopes — Ditto.
• Houston F Tina Thompson — Like a fine wine, gets better with age.
• Houston G Cynthia Cooper — An overlooked talent who should have been marketed more while playing.
• Detroit G Katie Smith — Best pure shooter in the league.
• Sacramento C Yolanda Griffith — Love the defense and mentality in the paint.
• Los Angeles C Lisa Leslie — Great ambassador for the league and an incredibly talented post player.
• Indiana F Tamika Catchings — Next to Swoopes, has the best all-around game in the league.
• New York G Teresa Weatherspoon — Great defender in her day and continues to be a solid ambassador.

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