Los Angeles Sparks

The Los Angeles Sparks are an American women 's basketball team in the Women's National Basketball Association based in Los Angeles in the U.S. state of California.

The Sparks are the sister team of the Los Angeles Lakers of the National Basketball Association.

2001 and 2002, the Sparks won the WNBA Championship.

  • 3.1 Sporting achievements
  • 3.2 Individual Awards
  • 3.3 season statistics
  • 5.1 Current squad for the 2008 season
  • 5.2 Locked jersey numbers


First years (1997 to 2000)

The Sparks were founded in 1997 and thus are a team of the Original Eight. The Sparks played their first league game on June 21, 1997 against the New York Liberty at the Great Western Forum in Inglewood. This game was also the opening game of the WNBA season. The first basket of the game and the league scoring Penny Toler before 14.284 spectators. The game won by the Sparks at the end with 67:57. The Sparks finished their first season with a balanced record of 14 wins in 28 games. Due to losing their final regular season game against the Phoenix Mercury, the Sparks missed the playoffs scarce. In the following season, the Sparks missed the playoffs with only 12 wins in 30 games again. In the 1999 season, the Sparks were able to win most of their games and thus reach the playoffs for the first time the first time. In the Conference Semifinals, they could win the home game against the Sacramento Monarchs with 71:58 and thus qualify for the Conference Finals, where they faced the Houston Comets, who won the first two championships. The Sparks were, however, no chance and lost the best-of -three series clearly with 0:2. In the 2000 season, the Sparks were able to increase again and finished the season with 28 wins in 32 games as the best team in the league. The Sparks went into the playoffs after a clear 2-0 victory against the Mercury again in the Conference Finals, where they again met the Comets. Although the Sparks were the clear favorite and also had the home advantage on their side, they lost the series back clearly with 0:2.

Successor of Comets (2001)

In the 2001 season, the Sparks wore their home games for the first time from the Staples Center. The move to the new arena brought the Sparks probably lucky because they were able to win all 16 home games this season. Led by Michael Cooper, who was appointed in the previous season for Coach of the Year, the Sparks were finally able to finish the regular season with 28 wins again in 32 games. Thus, the Sparks qualified again the first team for the playoffs, where they met the four-time WNBA champion Houston. The Sparks left the Comets, who played one season for the first time without their superstar Cynthia Cooper, no chance and won the series 2-0. Thus, the Comets lost after four seasons for the first time a series in the playoffs. In the conference finals, the Sparks could not be held back by the Sacramento Monarchs, and thus attracted the first time in its history in the WNBA Finals, where they faced the Charlotte Sting. The Sparks made ​​with Sting short process and won the series 2-0 clear. This solved the Sparks the Comets officially the WNBA Throne. For Finals MVP Sparks superstar Lisa Leslie was appointed.


The Los Angeles Sparks played from 1997 to 2000 at the Great Western Forum. 2001 changed the Sparks in the Staples Center, which was opened on 17 October 1999. In addition to the Sparks since 1999 also play the Los Angeles Lakers and Los Angeles Clippers of the National Basketball Association, and the Los Angeles Kings of the National Hockey League at the Staples Center.

Achievements and honors

Sporting successes

The Sparks won in the 2001 and 2002 season, the WNBA championship, so are the Sparks after the Houston Comets and Detroit Shock is the most successful team in the history of the WNBA.

Individual Awards

Coach of the Year Award: The award for the best coaches in the regular season came in the 2000 season to Michael Cooper.

  • 2000 - Michael Cooper

Defensive Player of the Year Award: The award for the most outstanding defensive player of the regular season were awarded in 2004 and 2008, Lisa Leslie.

  • 2004 - Lisa Leslie
  • 2008 - Lisa Leslie

Finals MVP Award: The Sparks won the championship in 2001 and 2002, both times was Lisa Leslie nominated for player of the finals.

  • 2001 - Lisa Leslie
  • 2002 - Lisa Leslie

Kim Perrot Sportsmanship Award: The young Chinese Zheng Haixia Award 1997 for their good sportsmanship Kim Perrot Sportsmanship Award with the.

Most Valuable Player Award: Lisa Leslie was able to win this award so far three times as often as any other player in the WNBA. 2008 Rookie Candace Parker was named MVP of the season.

  • 2001 - Lisa Leslie
  • 2004 - Lisa Leslie
  • 2006 - Lisa Leslie
  • 2008 - Candace Parker

Peak performers: this award have already won some players of the Sparks in different categories.

Rookie of the Year Award: 2008 Candace Parker became the first player of the Sparks honored as the best rookie of the season with this award.

  • 2008 - Candace Parker

WNBA All- Decade Team: On the occasion of the tenth anniversary of the WNBA in 2006 chose fans, media, current players and coaches, the ten players who had the most influence on the success of the WNBA. With Lisa Leslie was selected as the only player of the Sparks.

  • 2006 - Lisa Leslie

Season statistics

Note: GP = Games, W = Wins, L = Losses


  • Linda Sharp ( 1997)
  • Julie Rosseau ( 1997-98 )
  • Orlando Woolridge (1998-99 )
  • Karleen Thompson ( 2004)
  • Ryan Weisenberg (2004)
  • Bibby Henry (2005)
  • Joe Bryant ( 2005-07 )
  • Michael Cooper (1999-2004 and since 2007)


Current squad for the 2008 season

As of March 11, 2009

Locked jersey numbers

The jersey numbers following players are no longer awarded by the Sparks: