New York Liberty 2021 WNBA Player Awards

The following members of the New York Liberty are in contention for 2021 WNBA Player Awards:

Sami Whitcomb
Kia WNBA Most Improved Player

2020 2021
PPG 8.1 11.7
RPG 2.3 5.0
APG 2.0 2.7
FG% 44.3% 47.3%
3PT FG% 38.1% 42.5%
3PT FGM 32 76
SPG 0.7 1.0
MPG 16.5 28.1

 

  • Compiled a career-best regular season in her first campaign with New York.
  • Averaged career-highs of 11.7 points, 5.0 rebounds and 2.7 assists per game.
  • Shot personal bests of 47.3% from the field and 42.5% from deep, as well as logged a career-high 28.1 minutes per game across 25 starts. Whitcomb did not start in any games in 2020.
  • Sami is No. 2 in the WNBA in three-point field goals made on the season (76).



Betnijah Laney
All-WNBA Team

2021 WNBA RANKINGS
PPG 16.8 10th
POINTS 536 9th
APG 5.2 7th
ASSISTS 167 5th
FGM 203 6th
MIN 1079 1st
MPG 33.7 3rd

 

  • Became just the fourth player in WNBA history to finish the regular season averaging 16.7+ points, 5+ assists and 4+ rebounds, joining Cappie Pondexter (2009), Diana Taurasi (2013), and Candace Parker (2015).
  • 2021 WNBA All-Star and Liberty leading scorer Betnijah Laney is top 10 in the WNBA across the following categories:
    • MPG: 33.7 (4th)
    • Total Minutes: 1079 (1st)
    • PPG: 16.8 (10th)
    • Total Points: 536 (9th)
    • APG: 5.2 (7th)
    • Total Assists: 167 (5th)
  • Laney scored 536 points during the regular season, more than her first four WNBA seasons combined.
  • Betnijah scored in double figures in 27 of 32 games this season, scoring 20+ points in the first eight consecutive contests.
  • Laney is the first Liberty player to open a season with eight games of 20+ points in franchise history. Throughout the league’s history, the record for the longest 20+ point streak to open a season is 9 and is held by Cynthia Cooper (1999 season).



Rebecca Allen
WNBA All-Defensive Team

2021 WNBA RANKINGS (GUARDS)
SPG 1.6 5th (4th)
STEALS 40 8th (6th)
%STL 42.9% 1st (1st)
BPG 1.3 8th (1st)
BLOCKS 30 13th (1st)
STOCKS PER GAME 2.84 2nd (1st)

 

  • Leads the Liberty in steals (40) and blocks (31).
  • Ranks 5th in the WNBA in steals per game with 1.6, and 8th leaguewide in blocks per game with 1.3. Also ranks No. 1 in blocks per game amongst WNBA guards.
  • Allen is just one of three players across the WNBA this year to average 2.8+ stocks (steals and blocks) per game along with Sylvia Fowles and Breanna Stewart.
  • Bec finished the regular season as just the 17th player in league history to average at least 1.6 steals and 1.2+ blocks per game.
  • Recorded back-to-back blocks in the final two possessions against the Los Angeles Sparks in Liberty’s 76-73 win on June 20.


Michaela Onyenwere
Kia WNBA Rookie of the Year

2021 WNBA ROOKIE RANKINGS
PPG 8.6 1st
POINTS 275 1st
FGM 91 1st
3PT FGM 37 1st
MPG 22.5 1st
MINUTES 721 1st
RPG 2.9 2nd
REBOUNDS 94 2nd

 

  • Onyenwere is leading all WNBA rookies in:
    • PPG: 8.6
    • Total Points: 275
    • Total Field Goals Made: 91
    • MPG: 22.5
    • Total Minutes: 721
    • RPG: 3.0 (2nd)
  • She has won three consecutive WNBA Rookie of the Month honors — the only newcomer to garner the award this season and the only Liberty rookie to ever win consecutively.
  • Michaela scored in double figures in 12 contests in her rookie regular season campaign.
  • Her 11 points and career-high 10 rebounds against Minnesota on August 31 was her first-career double-double.

DiDi Richards
WNBA All-Rookie Team

2021 WNBA ROOKIE RANKINGS
FG% 42.1% 2nd
FGM 27 4th
3PT FG% 45.5% 1st
3PT FGM 10 4th
ASSISTS 25 3rd
STEALS 17 2nd
BLOCKS 5 3rd
MINUTES 346 3rd

 

  • Richards is leading all rookies in three-point field goal percentage, shooting 45.5% (10-22) from distance despite attempting only one three in four seasons at Baylor.
  • DiDi ranks second amongst rookies in:
    • Games Played: 31
    • Field Goal Percentage: 42.1% (minimum 30 attempts)
    • Steals: 17
  • Also ranks third in assists (25), blocks (5), and total minutes (320).