Liberty’s Tina Charles, Sparks’ Nneka Ogwumike named WNBA Players of the Month
NEW YORK – Tina Charles of the New York Liberty and Nneka Ogwumike of the Los Angeles Sparks today were named the WNBA’s Eastern and Western Conference Players of the Month presented by Samsung, respectively, for games played in July. Charles earned her third consecutive Player of the Month honor and her eighth overall, surpassing Maya Moore of the Minnesota Lynx for the most since the award’s inception in 2010. For Ogwumike, who also won the award in June, the Player of the Month award is the second of her career.
The Eastern and Western Conference Player of the Month awards, as well as the WNBA Rookie of the Month, are presented by Samsung and are part of the larger WNBA Performance Awards presented by Samsung program. This marks the third consecutive season that Samsung, an official WNBA marketing partner, will present the WNBA’s highest individual honors, including the WNBA Most Valuable Player, WNBA Most Improved Player, WNBA Sixth Woman of the Year, WNBA Defensive Player of the Year and WNBA Rookie of the Year.
Charles, the 2012 WNBA MVP and a four-time WNBA All-Star, led the Eastern Conference in rebounding (9.3 rpg) in July, trailing only Ogwumike among all players. She also finished second in the East in scoring (20.0 ppg) and ninth in free throw percentage (39-of-44, .886), while contributing 2.5 assists per game. Charles guided New York to a 7-3 mark during the month, the best record among East teams, as the Liberty improved to 18-8 overall to maintain the top spot in the conference.
The former University of Connecticut standout posted four double-doubles in July and four games of at least 25 points. Charles opened the month with 31 points and 10 rebounds in a 99-88 win at the Phoenix Mercury on July 1. She followed that effort two days later with 27 points and nine boards in a 77-67 loss at Los Angeles. Charles then helped New York head coach Bill Laimbeer notch his 200th regular-season victory when she recorded 29 points and nine rebounds in an 88-85 road win over the Chicago Sky on July 8.
Charles closed the month with three double-doubles in her final four outings, including 15 points and 14 rebounds in an 88-70 loss at Minnesota on July 15; and 14 points and 10 boards in her next game, an 83-76 home victory against the Connecticut Sun on July 17. She capped July with 25 points and 13 rebounds in an 82-70 home loss to the Indiana Fever on July 21.
Additional highlights of Charles’ play in July included:
- July 6 vs. Seattle Storm: 18 points, six rebounds and four steals in a 78-74 win
- July 13 vs. Atlanta Dream: 18 points and nine rebounds in an 86-62 victory
Ogwumike, the 2012 WNBA Rookie of the Year and a three-time WNBA All-Star, led all WNBA players in field goal percentage (.720, 67-of-93), rebounding (10.8 rpg) and double-doubles (six) in July, when Los Angeles went 6-2 to improve to a league-best 21-3. Among Western Conference players she ranked first in scoring (21.9 ppg), fourth in blocks (1.63 bpg) and tied for fourth in steals (1.38 spg).
During the month, the former Stanford star scored 20 or more points in seven of eight games. She opened the month on July 3 by tallying 22 points and 15 rebounds in a 77-67 victory over New York. On July 13, she logged the first of five consecutive double-doubles, finishing with 20 points, 11 rebounds and four blocks in a 77-67 win at Chicago. That stretch also included 26 points, 12 rebounds and three steals in a 91-74 loss at Atlanta on July 17; and a 24-point, 14-rebound outing in her final game of July, a 95-75 win over the host Washington Mystics on July 22.
Additional highlights of Ogwumike’s play in July included:
- July 15 at Connecticut: 22 points and 10 rebounds in a 98-92 victory
- July 19 at Indiana: 16 points, 14 rebounds and seven assists in a 92-82 loss
For more information on this year’s WNBA Performance Awards presented by Samsung, visit www.wnba.com/awards.
2016 WNBA PLAYERS OF THE MONTH PRESENTED BY SAMSUNG WINNERS
Month East Player Team West Player Team
May Tina Charles New York Maya Moore Minnesota
June Tina Charles New York Nneka Ogwumike Los Angeles
July Tina Charles New York Nneka Ogwumike Los Angeles
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