Blogs > Elm City to Eagleville

A blog on UConn women's basketball.

Sunday, October 07, 2012

Mike Thibault edged out for WNBA coach of year honors

Mike Thibault of the Connecticut Sun fell three votes shy of joining former Houston Comets coach Van Chancellor as the only three-time winner of the WNBA Coach of the Year award.

Carol Ross of the Los Angeles Sparks received 15 votes to win the award in her first season as a WNBA head coach followed by Thibault and last year's winner Cheryl Reeve of Minnesota.

Thibault was named the WNBA Coach of the Year in 2006 and 2008.

Speaking of Connecticut and Minnesota, if either team wins their respective conference finals it will extend an impressive streak of having at least one former UConn star in the WNBA championship series to 10 years. Minnesota is up first and leads Los Angeles 40-39 at halftime needing a win either today or Wednesday to advance to the championship series. Connecticut will try to close out Indiana tomorrow night. If the Fever wins tomorrow, the teams will play on Thursday at Mohegan Sun Arena with a spot in the WNBA finals on the line.

Finally, former Stanford star Nneka Ogwumike was named the WNBA's Rookie of the Year. Ogwumike received 19 of the 21 votes to become the fifth straight No. 1 overall pick to win the award. Going back to Diana Taurasi in 2004, the No. 1 overall selections have now won seven of the last nine Rookie of the Year awards. No disrespect meant to Tulsa's Glory Johnson or Samantha Prahalis of Phoenix who each received one vote but I'm not sure how anybody other than Ogwumike gets a vote for this award. Ogwumike also joined on the WNBA's All-Rookie team by Prahalis, Johnson, former UConn star Tiffany Hayes of the Atlanta Dream and Tulsa's Riquana Williams.

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