Candace Parker wins WNBA Most Valuable Player award for second time

WNBA President Laurel J. Richie, right, presents the Sparks' Candace Parker, left, with the WNBA Most Valuable Player award
(Danny Moloshok / Associated Press)

The WNBA announced Thursday that Sparks forward/center Candace Parker won her second most-valuable-player award.

Parker, who averaged 17.9 points, 8.7 rebounds and 3.8 assists this season, also won the award her rookie year in 2008.


“I was shocked when I got your phone call yesterday,” Parker said. “I was so focussed and into playoff mode that, you know, I really am humbled and wasn’t expecting this because of the great competition and how much the WNBA has grown since I’ve been on this stage five years ago.

“The first thought that came to my mind when I received [WNBA President Laurel Richie’s] phone call was, I remember back to when I was in college, and my coach, Pat Summitt, said to me, ‘You have to handle success like you handle failure.’

“Five years ago, I stood on this stage young. I was back here and just thought that this happened, that you just come into the WNBA, and everything happens so fast. Years later, obstacles thrown, injuries, a beautiful daughter, things like that happen. It’s not what’s thrown at you, it’s how you handle it.”

Parker led the Sparks to a second-place finish in the Western Conference. The Sparks play host to the third-seeded Phoenix Mercury in Game 1 of the first round of the playoffs Thursday at 7 p.m.


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