Jason Kidd’s five favorite WNBA players
Dallas Mavericks coach and Dallas Wings supporter talks about the players he loves to watch, the upcoming NBA season
Training camp for the Dallas Mavericks is less than a week away (Sept. 26), but preparation for the season couldn’t keep Jason Kidd from supporting the Dallas Wings on Tuesday as they swept the Atlanta Dream in the first round of the WNBA playoffs.
Kidd, who sat courtside next to franchise legends Dirk Nowitzki and Michael Finley, has thrown his support to women’s basketball with the launch of the Jason Kidd Select girls basketball program.
As the Mavericks head coach has been a big supporter of the Wings and the WNBA, Andscape asked him to list his five favorite WNBA players.
Diana Taurasi, Phoenix Mercury
I love her competitiveness. She is a true unicorn and a pioneer of the game. She’s the blueprint of longevity and is a champion.
Kelsey Plum, Las Vegas Aces
Such a great competitor and, watching her play, she shows a love for the game. A winner who is never afraid of the moment. I’m a big fan.
Arike Ogunbowale, Dallas Wings
She plays with the Dallas Wings, so being able to watch her at home I’ve come to appreciate her game. She trains with a friend of ours from Milwaukee [Ogunbowale’s hometown], so I got a chance to hear about her early. Not only did she live up to the expectations, but her game has blossomed. On my team [Mavericks], I have quite a few scorers, and she reminds me of a couple of the players I’ve had an opportunity to coach.
Elena Delle Donne, Washington Mystics
You said I didn’t have any post players? Well, she has the Dirk [Nowitzki] game, so I guess Dirk didn’t post up … I’m joking. She’s inside out. She can do it all. She can put it on the floor and she can hurt you from anywhere on the floor. When you talk about [her], she has the total package.
Sabrina Ionescu, New York Liberty
Being a guy who represents the Bay, gotta have someone who is from the Bay area. I met her last year in L.A., but I’d heard about her for a long time. You can see her game has blossomed. She’s shooting the ball at a high rate, she can get you a triple-double and she fills the stat sheet. I really enjoy watching her play.
After the Mavericks fell short of the NBA playoffs last season, Kidd is excited about the upcoming season where his two stars, guards Luka Dončić and Kyrie Irving, will have an entire training camp to mesh their talents.
“It all starts with Luka,” Kidd said. “I’m excited to have an opportunity to coach a young star who’s one of the best players in the world. And having Luka and Kyrie in training camp and having that time to foster a relationship, I’m excited.”
Also exciting for Kidd are the additions of NBA vets Grant Williams and Seth Curry and first-round picks Dereck Lively II and Olivier-Maxence Prosper.
“I thought [general manager Nico Harrison] did an incredible job getting not only younger and more athletic, but getting players that fit what we’re trying to build in Dallas.”
Getting the players to mesh will be up to Kidd, who recently was praised as a “genius” by Milwaukee Bucks star Giannis Antetokounmpo during a podcast appearance.
“I haven’t heard the podcast, so I have to make sure that I hear that it’s his voice,” Kidd said, laughing. “All joking aside, he’s one of the best players I’ve ever had the opportunity to coach, he’s a champion and deserves everything. A great player, and a great person.”