This week, the greatest women's basketball player of all time surpassed 8,000 career points in front of thousands of screaming kids in Madison Square Garden in a matinee matchup between th Mercury and Liberty. Diana Taurasi scored 21 points, finishing a perfect 10-10 from the free throw line to lead her Mercury to a an 80-74 victory.
We live in an era where it can be hard for us to comprehend what certain milestones mean and just how difficult it must have been to achieve a single point let alone thousands. Getting to experience the career of someone like Diana Taurasi, well, we are extremely lucky.
Many of us see the number 8,000, we click "retweet" and move on with our day. I wanted to take a closer look at the career of Taurasi, from her earlier days, to her dominance in Storrs, to her time spent overseas and where she is now in the WNBA. To the best of my ability, and it was not easy, I wanted to find out exactly how many (recorded) points Diana Taurasi has scored in her career.
Taurasi graduated from Don Antonio Lugo High School in Southern California in 2000. As a WBCA All-American, she finished her career scoring 2,156 points in her four-year prep career. If only we could find out how many points she scored in middle school…
As a two-time National Player of the Year, Taurasi led Connecticut to an overall record of 139-8 and three National Championships during her four years. She averaged 15 points per game and finished her career scoring 2,156 points, yet again.
Taurasi has spent her career playing with top Russian teams like Dynamo Moscow, Spartak Moscow and UMMC along with top Turkish teams in Fenerbahce and Galatasary. She is a six-time Euroleague champion and MVP. I traced back her entire overseas career beginning in 2005 in Russia to her final season in 2017, she scored 3,166 total points in her 12 seasons.
She is a four-time Olympic gold medalist winning 2004 in Athens, 2008 in Beijing, 2012 in London and 2016 in Rio. She has a bronze medal from 2006 and two gold medals from the 2010 and 2014 World Championships. Through her time with Team USA, she's netted 840 points. (Counting only Olympic and World Championship Competition).
Last summer in June of 2017, Taurasi became the all-time leading scorer in the WNBA surpassing Tina Thompson with her 7,489th career point and doing so in 112 fewer games. With three WNBA titles under her belt from 2007, 2009 and 2014 she was also named the league MVP in 2009 and Finals MVP in 2009 and 2014. On June 5th, 2018, she scored her 8,000th point and is now sitting at 8,018 points and counting.
Add them up…
High School: 2,156 College: 2,156 Overseas: 3,166 WNBA: 8,018 Team USA: 840
…and it's truly fascinating. The best part? She's still going and looks to be in tremendous shape and physically able to play for years to come. Congratulations DT, we are all extremely fortunate to experience your greatness!
The Mercury will look to continue the win streak as they host the Sky on Friday, June 8th at 9pm ET and can be seen on WNBA League Pass.
*Note: I did not take into account WNBA or int. All-Star Games or exhibition games.
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