1997 WNBA season

Last updated
1997 WNBA season
League Women's National Basketball Association
Sport Basketball
DurationJune 21 - August 30
Number of games28
Number of teams8
Total attendance1,082,963
TV partner(s) ESPN, NBC, Lifetime
1997 WNBA Draft
Top draft pick Flag of the United States.svg Tina Thompson
Picked by Houston Comets
Regular season
Season MVP Flag of the United States.svg Cynthia Cooper (Houston)
Top scorer C. Cooper (22.2)
Playoffs
Eastern champions Houston Comets, New York Liberty
  Eastern runners-up Charlotte Sting
Western championsnone due to setup
  Western runners-up Phoenix Mercury
Finals
Champions Houston Comets
  Runners-up New York Liberty
Finals MVP Flag of the United States.svg Cynthia Cooper (Houston)
WNBA seasons

The 1997 WNBA Season was the Women's National Basketball Association's first in existence. It started off with 8 franchises: Charlotte Sting, Cleveland Rockers, Houston Comets, Los Angeles Sparks, New York Liberty, Phoenix Mercury, Sacramento Monarchs, and the Utah Starzz. It featured an inaugural game between the New York Liberty and the Los Angeles Sparks. The Sparks lost to the New York Liberty, 67–57. The attendance at the Forum was 14,284. [1] The season ended with the Comets defeating the Liberty in a one-game series 65–51. Cynthia Cooper was named MVP of the game.

Contents

Regular season standings

Eastern Conference

Eastern Conference WLPCTConf.GB
Houston Comets x1810.6436–6
New York Liberty x1711.6078–41.0
Charlotte Sting x1513.5365–73.0
Cleveland Rockers o1513.5365–73.0

Western Conference

Western Conference WLPCTConf.GB
Phoenix Mercury x1612.5719–3
Los Angeles Sparks o1414.5008–42.0
Sacramento Monarchs o1018.3574–86.0
Utah Starzz o721.2503–99.0

Season award winners

AwardWinnerTeam
WNBA Finals MVP Award Cynthia Cooper Houston Comets
WNBA Most Valuable Player Award Cynthia Cooper Houston Comets
WNBA Defensive Player of the Year Award Teresa Weatherspoon New York Liberty
WNBA Peak Performer Andrea Congreaves Charlotte Sting
WNBA Peak Performer Haixia Zheng Los Angeles Sparks
WNBA Sportsmanship Award Haixia Zheng Los Angeles Sparks
WNBA Coach of the Year Award Van Chancellor Houston Comets

League leaders

[2]

Playoffs

There were only 8 teams in the league. For the playoffs, the four teams with the best record in the league were seeded one to four. Houston was in the Eastern Conference in 1997 so two Eastern Conference teams matched up in the WNBA Finals.

WNBA Semi-Finals
Single game
WNBA Championship
Single game
      
E1 Houston 70
E3 Charlotte 54
E1 Houston 65
E2 New York 51
W1 Phoenix 41
E2 New York 59

Coaches

Eastern Conference

Western Conference

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References

  1. "News Archive".
  2. "1997 WNBA Season Summary".