April 25, 2000
SECAUCUS, N.J. - - Tulane senior guard Grace Daley was the fifth overall pick in the 2000 WNBA draft on Tuesday, as she was selected by the Minnesota Lynx.
Daley was the second college player drafted and becomes the second Tulane player to be drafted by a women's professional basketball league in the past three seasons. Former Green Wave standout Barbara Farris was selected as the No. 3 overall pick by the New England Blizzard in the 1998 ABL draft.
The No. 1 overall pick, Ann Wauters of Belgium, also has a Tulane connection. The 6-6 center was a Green Wave signee for the 1998-99 season but chose to remain in Europe to play professionally just prior to the start of the school year. She was the top selection by the Cleveland Rockers.
"I'm excited to be playing in Minnesota," Daley said. "I think being selected by Minnesota has put me in a great situation because this team is up-and-coming and on the rise. Just to be part of that is a fun feeling."
Daley finished her senior year by earning All-America honors from a host of organizations and publications. She was the 2000 Conference USA Player of the Year and helped guide the Green Wave to two C-USA regular season championships and three C-USA Tournament titles in her four seasons. She was among the nation's leading scorers at 21.6 points per game and earned Most Valuable Player honors for the West team at the WBCA All-Star Classic during the Final Four.
"We are certainly very excited for Grace," Tulane head coach Lisa Stockton said. "This is good for the Tulane women's basketball program. She has brought so much to our team over the last four years and has helped put Tulane on the map in the world of women's basketball."
Daley will be joined on the Minnesota Lynx by seven other draft choices. Head coach Brian Agler and his staff selected Louisiana Tech's Betty Lennox with the sixth overall pick and UCLA's Maylana Martin with the 10th overall choice. In the second round, the Lynx picked up Rice's Marla Brumfield (22nd overall selection) and Texas Tech's Keitha Dickerson (24th). The third round saw Minnesota pick up Oklahoma's Phylesha Whaley (38th) while the fourth round produced St. Joseph's Jana Lichnerova (54th) and former ABL player Shanele Stires (56th). There were four rounds of 16 picks each in the draft.
"Grace is a very unselfish player who will fit well in our style of play," Agler said. "We feel that she can give us some minutes at the point guard position, as well."
Training camps for each WNBA team begin Wednesday, May 3, while the league's regular season opener is Monday, May 29th. The Lynx begin the season on Wednesday, May 31st against the Clevelan Rockers. Minnesota finished last season with an overall record of 15-17.