Sun Win Top Pick In WNBA Draft
By DOUG FEINBERG, AP Basketball Writer
SECAUCUS, N.J. (AP) _ The Connecticut Sun won the top pick in the WNBA lottery Tuesday, giving them the first shot in a draft that will feature Chiney Ogwumike of Stanford, Odyssey Sims of Baylor and Alyssa Thomas of Maryland.
They will be followed in the April draft by the Tulsa Shock, San Antonio Silver Stars and New York Liberty.
“This draft is deep and full of talent,” ESPN analyst Rebecca Lobo said. “There aren’t a `Big 3′ but there are a group of players who can make a real impact for their teams this W season.”
Connecticut, which finished last in the Eastern Conference last season, had a 44 percent chance of winning the No. 1 selection. It’s the second time Connecticut will go first _ in 2010 it traded up for the first pick and took Tina Charles.
New York and Tulsa each had a 23 percent chance and San Antonio has a 10 percent chance. It was only the fifth time in the 12 lotteries that the team with the worst record got the No. 1 pick. Only once since the league instituted a lottery before the 2002 draft has it gone according to the odds. That happened in 2009.
The rest of the first-round selections are: Indiana, Washington, Seattle, Atlanta, Phoenix, Chicago, Los Angeles and Minnesota.
This was the second straight year the lottery was shown on television. Buoyed by the success of last season’s lottery when Phoenix won and earned the right to draft Brittney Griner, the league and ESPN decided to do it again. In the past, the lottery had been done at a league meeting.
“ESPN continues to be committed to the WNBA property,” said Doug White, senior director, programming and acquisitions.
The actual lottery was held at league headquarters in Manhattan a few hours before it was shown on TV. The envelopes with the results were taken by car to the NBA studios in New Jersey.
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