First No. 1 Pick in 24-Year Franchise History
BROOKLYN – April 17, 2020 – With the first-ever No.1 pick in franchise history, the New York Liberty selected University of Oregon guard, Sabrina Ionescu in the 2020 WNBA Draft.
“It’s a historic night for the New York Liberty,” said General Manager, Jonathan Kolb. “Sabrina is a generational player whose resume speaks for itself and we are thrilled to have her as our first-ever No.1 pick. We look forward to adding her to the Liberty family, as we work to re-establish ourselves as one of the top teams in the league for years to come.”
Ionescu (pronounced yo-NESS-coo) becomes just the ninth Duck in program history to be taken in the draft and the first to ever be drafted in the first round.
The 5-11 guard helped lead the Ducks to back-to-back trips to the Elite Eight during her freshman and sophomore years, the Final Four as a junior, and the Pac-12 Tournament Championship title in her senior campaign, which was cut short due to the coronavirus pandemic. She is the program’s all-time leader in points, three-pointers, assists, triple-doubles and double-figure scoring games.
The Walnut Creek, California native amassed 2,562 points, 1,040 rebounds, and 1,091 assists during her collegiate career, making her the only player in NCAA history—male or female—with 2,000 points, 1,000 rebounds, and 1,000 assists. In her senior season, Ionescu averaged 17.5 points, 9.1 assists and 8.6 rebounds per game. She also shot 45.5 percent from the field, 42.2 percent from three-point range, and 85.1 percent from the free-throw line during her career at Oregon.
Ionescu is the NCAA’s leader in career triple-doubles (26) and has a highly-decorated resume that includes, but is not limited to:
- 2020 Associated Press Women’s Basketball Player of the Year
- 2020 Citizen Naismith Trophy
- Two-time Wade Trophy winner
- Two-time Wooden Award winner
- Three-time Nancy Lieberman Award winner
- Three-time Pac-12 Player of the Year