NEW YORK – Seattle Storm guard Sue Bird has been named the recipient of the 2017 Kim Perrot Sportsmanship Award, the WNBA announced today. This marks the second such honor for Bird, who shared the award with Ruth Riley in 2011.
The Kim Perrot Sportsmanship Award is presented each season to a player who exemplifies the ideals of sportsmanship on the court, including ethical behavior, fair play and integrity. The award is named for the late Kim Perrot, who helped guide the Houston Comets to their first two WNBA championships before passing away in August 1999 after a seven-month battle with cancer.
Bird received 20 votes from a national panel of 40 sportswriters and broadcasters. Atlanta Dream center/forward Elizabeth Williams finished second with five votes, while Los Angeles Sparks guard/forward Alana Beard was third with four votes. Minnesota Lynx forward Maya Moore and Washington Mystics center Krystal Thomas received three votes each.
The 5-9 Bird recently played her 15th WNBA season, all spent with the Storm, which selected her with the No. 1 overall pick in the 2002 WNBA Draft. During the 2017 season, Bird broke the WNBA record for career assists (2,610), surpassing Ticha Penicheiro (2,599). Bird was named an All-Star for the 10th time, matching Tamika Catchings for the most selections in league history. She averaged a career-high 6.6 assists to go with 10.6 points, helping Seattle advance to the WNBA Playoffs presented by Verizon for the second year in a row.
Last year, Bird was named one of the 20 greatest and most influential players in WNBA history as part of the WNBA Top20@20 presented by Verizon. The former University of Connecticut standout won WNBA championships with Seattle in 2004 and 2010. She is also a four-time Olympic gold medalist with USA Basketball (2004, 2008, 2012 and 2016).
Bird has led the WNBA in assist average three times (2005, 2009 and 2016). She finished the 2017 season ranked ninth in WNBA history in scoring (5,840 points) and eighth in steals (617).
About the WNBA
The WNBA – which features 12 teams and is the most successful women’s professional team sports league in the world – is a unique global sports property combining competition, sportsmanship, and entertainment value with its status as an icon for social change, achievement, and diversity. The league, which counts Verizon as its leaguewide marquee partner, completed its 21st regular season on Sept. 3, 2017.
Through WNBA Cares, the WNBA is deeply committed to creating programs that improve the quality of life for all people, with a special emphasis on programs that promote a healthy lifestyle and positive body image, increase breast and women’s health awareness, support youth and family development, and focus on education. For more information on the WNBA, log on to www.wnba.com.