Lisa Leslie is going to be honored in a historic way. According to Bleacher Report, Leslie will be the first woman to have a statue built in her likeness and displayed outside of the Staples Center.
The Los Angeles Times reported that the Los Angeles Sparks and the Anschutz Entertainment Group are still solidifying details about the reveal date but they agreed that Leslie’s statue would be the 11th one outside of the building.
Leslie’s statue will be the first WNBA player outside of the Sparks’ arena.
Leslie is one of the most notable players in the WNBA and one of the women who helped add exposure to the league.
Leslie was drafted in the WNBA’s first draft in 1997 and played with the Sparks throughout her entire career until she retired in 2009.
In those 12 years, Leslie won three league MVPs, two championships, four Olympic gold medals and three All-Star Game MVPs.
Leslie was the first woman to dunk in a game and averaged 17.3 points, 9.1 rebounds and 2.3 blocks per game. When she retired, she held the league record for points and rebounds.
In arguing for her statue, Los Angeles Times writer Arash Markazi wrote, Leslie “isn’t just one of the greatest WNBA players of all time, she is one of the greatest athletes to ever come out of Southern California.”
Leslie’s statue will be erected alongside Magic Johnson, Shaquille O’Neal and Wayne Gretzky.