The former Rutgers star and WNBA Finals MVP is hanging em’ up after 13 impactful seasons.
The WNBA has 144 women on 12 rosters, but only a handful of those players become brand names that are promoted and become forever attached to the fabric of the league. Fewer still are those that go down as certifiable legends and ultimately celebrity faces of the sport.
Cappie Pondexter is one of those legends that has helped drive the WNBA’s rise to the top professional sports league for women in history. The 13-year veteran announced her retirement from pro basketball on Tuesday.
With the 5-foot-9 pure scorer’s departure, the WNBA loses a mentor, two-time champion and a baller who in 2011 was voted as one of the Top 15 players in league history. She got mad Twitter love from the new generation that she’s inspired.
Thank You Legend 🙌🏽 @cappa23 ..
— Brittany Boyd – Jones (@adifferent1five) April 16, 2019
Ay shoutout to @cappa23 – you a legend bro and thats undisputed. i appreciate you believing in me from day one. on to the next venture!
— Imani McGee-Stafford (@imanitrishawn_) April 16, 2019
As a product of C. Vivian Stringer’s legendary Rutgers women’s hoops program. Pondexter combined her Oceanside California and Chicago upbringing with a tough Jersey swag to become a ferocious guard known for her scrappy hustle, deadly crossover, driving ability and flaming mid-range game.
Pondexter, 36, won two titles with the Mercury and was the 2007 WNBA Finals MVP after averaging 22 points per game in a rollercoaster five-game series, playing alongside two all-time greats in Diana Taurasi and Penny Taylor.
She won an Olympic gold medal in 2008. The next season she became the first player in WNBA history to win three consecutive Western Conference Player of the week awards. She played in seven All-Star games and was voted one of the WNBA’s Top 20 players of all time in 2016.
She was also good peoples off the court. Nurturing even. But if you were the opposition, then she was going to try and take your head off. Didn’t matter who you were.
A former teammate or the most imposing force in the game.
Cappie’s a true character of the game, from her passion to her neck tats to her championship grit. Her cultural impact is undeniable. She’s also won numerous championships playing overseas in Turkey and Russia — spending way more time breaking ankles and ground than trying to break faces.
NBA Deputy Commissioner and COO Mark Tatum released the following statement:
“Cappie Pondexter is one of the greatest players and fiercest competitors in WNBA history. She made her mark on the league with her vibrant personality and distinctive style, earning two WNBA championships and seven All-Star selections along the way. We expect more great things from her in whatever she does next and wish her nothing but the best.”