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WNBA: Top 5 Players of the Week (7/20-8/2)

Here are the top five players in the WNBA over the past two weeks.

Photo by Chris Poss

1. Maya Moore- Minnesota Lynx

Maya Moore continues to build her WNBA MVP case. On July 22nd, Moore poured in 25 points and grabbed eight rebounds in 45 minutes in a tough overtime loss to Connecticut. After winning the All-Star game MVP on July 25th, Moore returned to the Lynx and led the team to three straight wins.

On July 29th, Moore recorded 27 points, seven rebounds, three steals and four three-pointers in a win over the Sparks. She followed that up with two more 20+ scoring games in wins over Atlanta and Tulsa. In four games over the past two weeks, Moore averaged 23.3 points per game and knocked down 11 three-pointers.

One of the reasons why Moore has increased her scoring and overall level of play in July as compared to June is her three-point shooting. In June, Moore only hit 16 threes and shot 33.3% from behind the arc. In July, she knocked down 26 threes and shot an impressive 41.9% from three.

2. Elena Delle Donne- Chicago Sky

Elena Delle Donne continues to lead the MVP race, especially after her performances over the past two weeks. She averaged 25.5 points per game in the Sky's last four games, shot 42% from the floor and 94% from the free throw line (31-33).

On July 21st, she led the Sky to a victory over Atlanta, scoring 27 points, grabbing eight rebounds and blocking four shots. Following a 16-point, eight-rebound performance in the WNBA All-Star game, Delle Donne poured in 32 points as the Sky barely lost to the Mercury in overtime. She scored 21 points vs. Los Angeles on July 31st and poured in 22 points and a season-high four three-pointers in a win over Washington on August 2nd.

After scoring less than 20 points in four games in early July, Delle Donne has picked it up as of late, scoring 20+ in the Sky's last five contests.

3. Tina Charles- New York Liberty

Tina Charles is the best center in the Eastern Conference and is possibly, the best center in the WNBA this season. In the Liberty's four games in the past two weeks, Charles led New York to a 3-1 record by averaging 22.8 points per game and 8.8 rebounds per game.

On July 21st, Charles poured in 30 points on 14-24 shooting to lead the Liberty over the Storm. A day later on July 22nd, Charles recorded a 14 point, 14 rebound double-double in a victory over Los Angeles.

Following a solid performance in the All-Star game, Charles recorded 18 points and eight rebounds vs. Indiana on July 29th and 29 points and eight rebounds vs. Seattle on August 2nd. The New York Liberty currently sits in first place in the Eastern Conference in large part due to the play of Tina Charles.

4. Candace Parker- Los Angeles Sparks

Candace Parker is back. Parker returned to play her first three games of the 2015 WNBA season this week, much to the delight of the Los Angeles Sparks. She made her presence known right away, leading the Sparks to two wins, almost as many wins as the team had in the entire first half of the season.

In her first game back on July 29th, Parker nearly recorded a triple-double with 12 points, nine assists and seven rebounds. She then out-dueled Elena Delle Donne on July 31st, scoring 31 points and grabbing nine rebounds in the Sparks victory over a Chicago Sky team that rarely loses at home. She led the Sparks to another win on August 2nd vs. San Antonio, scoring 17 points, grabbing 11 rebounds and shooting 50% from the floor.

With Candace Parker back, Los Angeles is only 1/2 of a game out of the fourth playoff spot in the Western Conference. The Sparks frontcourt of Parker, Nneka Ogwumike and Jantel Lavender is starting to look like one of the best in the league. Since Parker's return, the three players have combined to score 55.7% of the team's points and have all scored in double-figures in each of LA's last three games.

5. DeWanna Bonner- Phoenix Mercury

In the absence of Diana Taurasi, DeWanna Bonner has taken her game to another level and has managed to lead Phoenix to a 12-7 record and a 3-1 record over the past two weeks. In the Mercury's lone loss of the two-week stretch, Bonner scored 15 points and shot 6-11 from the field against Los Angeles on July 21st.

She then exploded for 34 points vs. Chicago on July 28th, willing the Mercury to an overtime win by hitting two free throws to force overtime and then scoring eight of Phoenix's 11 points in the extra period. She then led the Mercury over Tulsa on July 30th, scoring 24 points and grabbing nine rebounds.

Finally, in the Mercury's win over Atlanta on August 2nd, Bonner did not make a field goal and only finished with four points but grabbed 10 rebounds and dished out five assists to help Phoenix secure the victory. With Bonner, as well as Brittney Griner and Candice Dupree, the Mercury are very much contenders out in the wild, wild West.