Fans name Mercury’s Taurasi to WNBA GOAT

Phoenix Mercury’s guard Diana Taurasi, on the day of Game 1 of her fourth WNBA Finals, was named by fans as the greatest player of all time.

The “Vote for the GOAT” voting was part of the WNBA celebration of its 25th. season. Fans could vote for anyone named to “Las W25” from September 5 to 19.

Taurasi, a 17-year veteran, received the award ahead of Mercury’s 91-77 loss to the Chicago Sky on Sunday. She has won three WNBA championships with Phoenix, the team that selected her first in the 2004 draft.

The 39-year-old star guard won her fifth Olympic gold medal, a record, at Tokyo 2020 this summer. In addition to winning titles with his wife and former teammate, Penny Taylor, in 2007, 2009 and 2014, Taurasi is also the league’s all-time leader in points, field goals scored, and three-point field goals.

“This well-deserved recognition reflects her continued excellence on the court, her leading role in promoting the WNBA and women’s basketball, and as a role model for young athletes everywhere. The opportunity to pay tribute to Dee is yet another special moment to commemorate our historic 25th season, “WNBA Commissioner Cathy Engelbert said as she handed Taurasi a special ball leading up to Game 1.

Taurasi also received a “FUTURA GOAT” romper on Sunday as an ode to Taylor giving birth to the couple’s second child, a girl, after Phoenix’s victory in Game 5 on Friday night.

An ESPN panel also ranked Taurasi as ESPN’s No. 1 player of all time. Tamika Catchings topped the list based on statistics.

“The W25,” which was unveiled on September 5, includes 10 active players: Sue Bird, Tina Charles, Elena Delle Donne, Sylvia Fowles, Brittney Griner, Angel McCoughtry, Nneka Ogwumike, Candace Parker, Breanna Stewart and Taurasi.

Fifteen retired players completed the list of winners: Seimone Augustus, Swin Cash, Tamika Catchings, Cynthia Cooper, Yolanda Griffith, Becky Hammon, Lauren Jackson, Lisa Leslie, Maya Moore, Ticha Penicheiro, Cappie Pondexter, Katie Smith, Sheryl Swoopes, Tina Thompson and Lindsay Whalen.