Former Trojan Lisa Leslie Wins WNBA MVP Award
Sept. 6, 2006
Former USC women's basketball standout Lisa Leslie, who will have her No. 33 jersey retired by USC this year, was named the WNBA's most valuable player on Sunday and became the second player in league history to win the award three times. Leslie was also WNBA MVP in 2001 and 2004 and joined Sheryl Swoopes as the only three-time MVP after posting perhaps the best season of her 10-year career.
This year Leslie averaged a career-high 20.0 points per game and shot a career-best 51.1 percent from the field. She also scored a career-high 41 points in a June 25 contest against San Antonio. The WNBA's all-time leading scorer, Leslie became the first player in WNBA history to pass the 5,000 career-point plateau this season.
'We are very proud that she is an alumni. We feel she is the greatest basketball player in the world,' USC coach Mark Trakh said. 'She represents our university with class, pride and dignity.'
Leslie will become the first USC women's basketball player to have her jersey retired during a ceremony coinciding with the 2006 Women of Troy season opener against Long Beach State on Nov. 10. Cheryl Miller will also have her No. 31 jersey retired.
Leslie played at USC from 1991 to 1994 where she was the National Player of the Year in 1994, a three-time All-American and the first player in Pacific-10 Conference history to make the All-Pac-10 team in each of her four seasons. She still holds the Pac-10 record for scoring and rebounding with 2,414 career points and 1,214 career rebounds.