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A’ja’s first All-Star Game

Rookie phenom A’ja Wilson descends on Minneapolis for her first of hopefully many WNBA All-Star Game appearances.

All-Star A’ja Wilson has had many reasons to rejoice during her first professional basketball season.
David Becker/NBAE via Getty Images

A’ja Wilson is having one of the most dominant rookie seasons in recent memory. The number one overall pick has exceeded all expectations and has thrust the Aces into the playoff picture. It was clear after just a few games that she was a special talent and it is why she’s the only rookie traveling to Minnesota for the WNBA All-Star game.

Wilson is at the top of the list in nearly all major statistical categories: seventh in the league in scoring (19.9), third in rebounding (8.7) and sixth in blocked shots (1.8). Wilson is already transcending the game and she’s just getting started.

Wilson is the first rookie since 2014 to be an All-Star and is looking to become only the seventh rookie in WNBA history to start in an All-Star game.

She is going to Minnesota looking to establish herself as one of the WNBA’s elite. You only get one first of anything in life, and the first time is always the sweetest. For A’ja Wilson, this is her chance to shine in front of the biggest stars in the game and cement herself as a mainstay for years to come. Now, don’t get me wrong — the weekend is about fun and celebrating the beautiful game that is basketball. But it is also a big stage and superstars shine brightest on the biggest stages.

Playing on Team Delle Donne, Wilson will get the chance to learn from and play with some of the biggest names in the WNBA. She’ll be getting invaluable experience from former champions and MVPs, like Sylvia Fowles, Brittney Griner, Diana Taurasi and, of course, team captain Delle Donne. All of those players are superstars who occupy positions Wilson aspires to claim one day. In her first ever All-Star game, fans should expect nothing less than Wilson proving that she belongs and showing the rest of the stars that she is a force to be reckoned with.

Expect A’ja Wilson to have a big game. Veteran players will likely feature her in rotations, and she will take the court eager to impress. She is not a player that blends in when she’s on the court; she always manages to stand out and make her presence felt. Playing alongside some of the greatest to ever do it, Wilson will find a way standout one way or another. But, basketball aside, it will be so much fun to watch one of the truly great personalities in the league get to relax and be herself for a weekend.

The All-Star game is loaded with veterans who may use the All-Star Weekend as a chance to relax and have fun. They have, after all, already proven themselves and built up their legacies. For A’ja Wilson, being an All-Star will be new and exciting, but also validating.

Wilson faced backlash for choosing South Carolina as her college. Despite it all, she has not only lived up to the hype but exceeded it. She has become only the second South Carolina Gamecock to be an All-Star and the first since 2003. Wilson just keeps breaking new ground and the All-Star Game is just the beginning. After a while, A’ja Wilson will be the veteran who is paving the way for the next generation of stars.

For now, Wilson is a star among legends, which is why her star might just shine brightest this weekend. Don’t ever underestimate A’ja Wilson when she has something to prove because odds are that she’ll do what she has done all along in her basketball career: be groundbreaking.