A’ja Wilson shared the news with her parents. She shared credit with her teammates.
“It’s just a feeling that never gets old,” Wilson, the Aces’ standout, said Wednesday about winning her second WNBA Most Valuable Player award.
Wilson, 26, whose Aces are waiting to learn their opponent in the league Finals, averaged 19.5 points and 9.4 rebounds and garnered 31 first-place votes from a media panel. Seattle Storm interior force Breanna Stewart was second with 23 first-place votes, and Wilson’s Aces teammate, Kelsey Plum, was third in the voting.
It’s the second MVP award for Wilson, who also won in 2020. She’s the seventh league player to win MVP more than once. She also was selected as the league’s Defensive Player of the Year.
Wilson said she called her parents the night before the announcement of her award was released. She said both she and her parents screamed in delight, just as they did when learning she had won in 2020.
“I’m so glad that they’re able to enjoy this moment with me,” Wilson said, “because without them, there’s no me. This was definitely a top-three exciting moment.”
Wilson shot 50%, led the league in blocks, averaging 1.9, and had 17 double-doubles. She joins a list of WNBA standouts who have won two awards in the same season. She’s the fifth player to be picked as top defender and MVP. The last player to do it was Lauren Jackson of Seattle in 2007. “Just to have my name on that list is truly a blessing,” Wilson said. “Hopefully. I can add a couple more of course, but just to be there and so young … our league is hard. It’s full of elite and great players, so for my name to now be on it, I’m blessed and thankful.”
The Aces had the best record in the league this year and will host the WNBA Finals on Sunday against either Connecticut or Chicago. Those teams will play a decisive Game 5 on Thursday.