MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – There’s one day left for WNBA All-Star Game fan voting, and a Lynx rookie figures to be among those selected to play in the league’s annual showcase of its best players.
It’s fair, maybe a little scary, to wonder where the Lynx would be this year without rookie forward Napheesa Collier.
The first-round pick out of UConn is third on the team in scoring, second in rebounds and blocks. She’s also played the second-most minutes, a huge role for a rookie, and a sign of coach Cheryl Reeve’s confidence in her.
“Yeah it’s what we thought we were getting – I think how quickly she gets things. Is it surprising? Probably, because there’s not many rookies that get things so quickly. You tell her one time,” Reeve said.
“I take a lot of pride in it. And that’s obviously one of my goals coming in, is I never want to be a liability. I want to be someone that my teammates and my coaches can count on,” Collier said.
Others have noticed. She’s currently ninth in fan voting for the All-Star Game, which would put her in.
“I think it’d be amazing. It’s something that everyone strives for every year, and to be able to get it my rookie year would be awesome,” Collier said.
What’s striking about Collier is all the similarities to, of all people, Maya Moore. They’re from the same hometown – Jefferson City, Missouri – both played at UConn, both were first-round picks by the Lynx, and now Collier could be the first rookie of the year for the Lynx since Moore in 2011.
“She’s someone that I looked up to growing up, playing in college, playing in the pros, so it’s really cool that I, like you said, came behind her every step. It’s been kind of weird, but it’s cool,” Collier said.