Following the conclusion of the first full month of the WNBA’s 2021 season, A’Ja Wilson of the Las Vegas Aces and Tina Charles of the Washington Mystics have been named Players of the Month for their respective conferences.
A’Ja Wilson played in nine games in June, averaging 20.1 points, 10.3 rebounds, 2.7 assists, 1.3 steals and 1.0 blocks while leading the Aces to a 7-2 record. She recorded six double-doubles in the month, including four 20-point, 10 rebound performances.
Thanks in part to the play of A’Ja Wilson, the Aces are currently tied with the reigning WNBA champion Seattle Storm for the best record in the league at 12-4. Wilson currently ranks seventh in the WNBA this season in scoring (19.3) and rebounds (8.8).
Tina Charles also played nine games in June finishing the month with averages of 24.7 points, 9.7 rebounds, and 2.7 assists with the Mystics posting a 4-5 record. She scored 20 points or more seven times including five times consecutively to end the month and recorded five double-doubles.
Charles in on pace to set a new WNBA record for the highest scoring average in a single-season currently averaging 25.5 points per game. The record is currently held by Diana Taurasi averaging 25.3 points in the 2006 season.
Other Player of the Month Nominees
Sylvia Fowles, Minnesota Lynx
Sylvia Fowles was absolutely spectacular in the month of June. In 10 games, Fowles averaged 16.2 points on 64% shooting, 10.4 rebounds, 2.6 steals and 2.1 blocks leading the Lynx to a 7-3 record. She had the highest steals average and the second-highest blocks average of any player in the entire month. The last player to average a double-double while also averaging at least two steals and two blocks playing at least five games in a single month was when Fowles herself did it in May of the 2017 season.
Courtney Vandersloot, Chicago Sky
While many attribute the Chicago Sky’s June eight-game win streak to Candace Parker returning to the lineup from injury, Courtney Vandersloot arguably played a bigger role. Vandersloot played 12 games in the month averaging 11.3 points, 9.2 assists, 2.9 rebounds and 2.5 steals with the Sky finishing with an 8-4 record. She had the highest assist average and the second highest steals average in the month. She recorded six double-doubles in the month of June tied for the most in that time.
Breanna Stewart, Seattle Storm
Breanna Stewart continued her great season in the month of June averaging 21.3 points, 9.9 rebounds, 3.4 assists, 1.8 blocks and 1.1 steals leading the Seattle Storm to a 7-3 record. This included leading the Storm to a five-game win streak during which she averaged 19.2 points, 11.6 rebounds and 4.2 assists. She won two Player of the Week awards in June the only player to do so multiple times.
Rookie of the Month: Michaela Onyenwere, New York Liberty
Michaela Onyenwere continues to be the overwhelming favorite to win the WNBA Rookie of the Year award as she wins the Rookie of the Month for the second straight time. She played 10 games in June averaging 8.9 points and 2.5 rebounds. After a slow start, Onyenwere ended the month off strong putting up 15.7 points and 3.7 rebounds in the last three games.