For the second time in her career, Alana Beard of Los Angeles has been named the Defensive Player of the Year. Not only is this her second time winning the award, she did so in consecutive years.
Beard is now the fifth player in league history to win back-to-back Defensive player of the Year. She joins Tamika Catchings (2005, 2006, 2009, 2010), Sheryl Swoopes (2002, 2003), Teresa Weatherspoon (1997, 1998), and Brittney Griner (2014, 2015).
The Sparks guard finished fourth in the league with 1.47 steals per game. Overall, Beard’s team averaged 7.94 steals per game and held teams to an average of 77 PPG.
On the year, Bear averaged 4.0 points, 3.3 rebounds, and 1.7 assists while shooting 40.0 percent from three-point range.
The WNBA also announced both teams who made the All-Defensive team.
Joining Beard on the first team are Brittney Griner (Phoenix), Jasmine Thomas (Connecticut), Natasha Howard (Seattle), and Jessica Breland (Atlanta).
The All-Defensive team consisted of Sylvia Fowles and Rebekkah Brunson (both Minnesota), Tiffany Hayes (Atlanta), Nneka Ogwumike (Los Angeles), and Ariel Atkins (Washington).