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Lisa Leslie

Lisa Leslie (born July 7, 1972) is a Women's National Basketball Association player who made history by becoming the first player to perform a dunk in that league.

Leslie became a famous basketball player long before her career in the WNBA began. Her supposed battles with Tina Thompson[?], both on the basketball court and on the personal side, became legendary in California as both WNBA players were high-schoolers. Later on, she went to UCLA, where she got much national exposure, playing some games on ESPN and winning various awards.

Leslie was one of the original members of the Los Angeles Sparks when the WNBA's first season opened in 1997. She had stated her intentions of dunking in a game before the first season even started, and she tried to dunk the ball on the first game of that season, against the New York Liberty, but she missed.

All throught the late 1990s, the Sparks kept making the playoffs, but getting eliminated as the Houston Comets claimed every WNBA championship played in the 20th Century's last decade. However, in 2001, the Sparks were finally able to topple the Comets, and they beat the Charlotte Sting to win the WNBA title for the first time. On July 30 of 2002, against the Miami Sol, she finally made the type of history she had always wanted to do: She became the first woman to score with a dunk in a WNBA game, as she stole the ball and then went on a open lane run to make a one handed dunk that made the sports shows highlights. Eight days before, she had become the first WNBA player to have over 3,000 career points, when she scored 24 points against the Orlando Miracle. That summer, she helped the Sparks to their second straight world championship, beating the Liberty.

While this was going on, Leslie was also busy as a member of the United States national women's basketball team. She helped lead them to gold medals in the 1996 and 2000 Olympic Games, and in the world championships of basketball.

Leslie is also a fashion model and aspiring actress on the side. She appeared in an episode of The Jersey.

In 2001, she was named MVP of the league, the all-star game and the finals.

Key Stats

  • points per game: 17.5
  • rebounds per game: 9.5
  • assists per game: 2.3
  • blocked shots per game: 2.2
  • steals per game: 1.2

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