End of 1st Q: Stars up 25-24. Toliver with 6, Beard with 5 #WeAreSparks— Los Angeles Sparks (@LA_Sparks) September 28, 2012
The WNBA announced tonight that Los Angeles Sparks guard Kristi Toliver has won the 2012 WNBA Most Improved Player Award in something of a landslide.
Toliver won 24 of 41 media votes (58%) from a panel of national and local sportswriters and broadcasters, more than triple the next closest candidate (Phoenix Mercury forward DeWanna Bonner, 7 votes).
Toliver set career-highs in a number of statistical categories this season, but the most significant given her style of play was arguably her shooting efficiency, which improved from 42.3% in 2011 to 49.1% in 2012. That improved shooting efficiency was a primary reason why she made one of the biggest statistical improvements of any player in the league this season.
We went over the pros and cons of Toliver as a candidate at mid-season and things pretty much held to form to finish the regular season, but the bottom line is that she did take a major step forward.
The full voting results are as follows:
|Kristi Toliver||L.A. Sparks||24|
|DeWanna Bonner||Phoenix Mercury||7|
|Epiphanny Prince||Chicago Sky||6|
|Rebekkah Brunson||Minnesota Lynx||2|
|Kara Lawson||Connecticut Sun||2|