The first WNBA game was played on June 21, 1997 between the New York Liberty and the Los Angeles Sparks. New York won the game 67-57.
The Houston Comets won the first WNBA title in 1997 in a one-game playoff victory over the New York Liberty.
Sheryl Swoopes, Tina Thompson and other top players in the WNBA played in the league's first All-Star game in 1999. The West defeated the East 79-61, with Lisa Leslie being name the game's MVP.
WNBA Record Holders
Lisa Leslie of the Los Angeles Sparks is the WNBA's all-time leading scorer with 4,732 points. Leslie picked up two of those points on July 30, 2002, when she became the first WNBA player to dunk the ball during a game.
Sheryl Swoopes of the Houston Comets has won the WNBA's MVP award three times - more than any other player. Swoopes was also the first WNBA player to record a triple-double in a game and the first WNBA player to have a running shoe named after her - Nike's "Air Swoopes".
In 2001, the Los Angeles Sparks set an WNBA record by winning 18 straight games.
WNBA Basketball Fun Facts
A regulation WNBA ball is 28.5 inches in circumference - one inch smaller than an NBA ball.
The WNBA has now expanded to 14 teams. The newest squad is the Chicago Sky, which will be playing for the first time in 2006.
The WNBA is making a few rule changes for the 2006 season. Games will now be divided into 10-minute quarters instead of 20-minute halves and the shot clock will be decreased to 24 seconds from 30 seconds.