From UConn Championships to Olympic Gold Medals to WNBA Records – Hartford Courant

UConn women’s basketball legend Sue Bird announced Thursday that she will be retiring from the WNBA after the 2022 season.

During his career, Bird averaged 11.9 points, 5.6 assists, and 1.3 steals per game. At international level, the 5-foot-9 fullback has helped USA Basketball win five Olympic gold medals and four FIBA ​​World Championships. After the 2021 season, Bird was second, only behind sophomore sensation Sabrina Ionescu in jersey sales.

Bird played 19 seasons in the WNBA after being drafted No. 1 overall by the Seattle Storm in 2002. Here are the milestones of his college, Olympic and WNBA career in numbers:

Bird was UConn’s first ever No. 1 WNBA draft pick.

Bird won two national championships with UConn in 2000 and 2002 and received the Nancy Liebermann Award twice (2001, 2002).

Not only has Bird been the WNBA regular season leader three times (2005, 2009, 2016), but she’s also won three Kim Perrot Sportsmanship Awards (2018, 2017, 2011).

With the Seattle Storm throughout his WNBA career, Bird was on four winning teams in the WNBA Finals. She has also won the FIBA ​​World Championship four times (2002, 2010, 2014, 2018).

Bird has won five Olympic gold medals with USA Basketball (2004, 2008, 2012, 2016 and 2020). She was selected to the All-WNBA First Team five times, which is tied for fifth all-time. The guard holds five different WNBA career records, including seasons played (19); matches played (559); assists (3,114); minutes played (17,532) and star appearances (12).

Bird made the WNBA All-Star Game in 12 different seasons (2002, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014, 2015, 2017, 2018, and 2021), most of any current or former player in the WNBA.

During the WNBA’s 25th anniversary celebration in 2021, Bird was named one of the 25 greatest players in league history. She was also named to the 20 and 15 list.

During his senior season at UConn, Bird let the Huskies go a perfect 39-0 season that was capped by his second national championship.

Bird set the UConn women’s basketball record for assists in a season where she dished out 231 assists in the 2001-02 season.

Bird is the only WNBA player to have played 500 career games.

Having never come off the bench in a game, Bird holds the WNBA record for career debut with 559.

Bird’s tenacity on the defensive side of the ball earns him his fourth all-time with 700 career interceptions.

Bird is second all-time in WNBA 3-pointers made with 965.

After leading UConn to a 39-0 season in 2002, Bird was named Sportswoman of the Year for Team Sports by the Women’s Sports Foundation.

Bird surpassed Seattle Storm’s record for field goals in 2017, she extended the record to 2,419.

On July 9, 2021, Bird became the first WNBA player to reach the 3,000 assist milestone.

Bird surpassed Tina Penicheiro’s all-time assists record in 2017. She is currently at a WNBA career-high 3,114 assists.

In 2015, Bird became the first player in WNBA history to reach 5,000 points and 2,000 assists.

Bird holds the Seattle Storm record for most minutes played with 17,532 during his career.

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