Diana Taurasi Named WNBA MVP

Phoenix Mercury superstar Diana Taurasi was the runaway victor in the WNBA MVP race, racking up double the points of any other contender in the race for women's basketball's highest individual honor.

Taurasi, the 27-year-old 6-foot forward who propelled her Mercury to a spot in this week's WNBA Finals, averaged 23.8 points per game in her sixth pro season with the Phoenix squad, who drafted Taurasi with the No. 1 pick in the 2004 WNBA draft.

The ex-University of Connecticut Husky is a four-time WNBA all-star -- but this season marks her first WNBA MVP win.

She received 27 first-place votes and 323 votes overall, beating second-place finisher Tamika Catchings of Indiana by 160 points.

"I felt like a little kid again," Taurasi said of the victory.

"In my career you get a lot of awards, like first-team all-star, but this really means a lot," Taurasi said.

The two-time Olympic gold medalist said she overcame a lot of "ups and downs" this year to win the award, most likely referring to her July 2 DUI arrest. She had a .17 blood alcohol level behind the wheel, more than twice the legal Arizona limit.

Taurasi's Mercury will face off against the Indiana Fever in the WNBA Finals this week. The first game is Tuesday evening at 9 p.m. e.t., broadcast from Phoenix.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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