Taj_McWilliams-Franklin

Taj McWilliams-Franklin

Taj McWilliams-Franklin (born on October 20 1970 in El Paso, Texas) is an American professional women's basketball player. In the United States, she plays the power forward position in the WNBA, playing for the Detroit Shock.

College years

After attending T.W. Josey High School in Augusta, Georgia, she attended Georgia State University in 1989 and played on the school's basketball team for one season, before transferring to St. Edward's University as a Rhetoric major.

While at St. Edward's, she set school records and individual achievements, including:

  • NAIA National Player of the Year in 1993.
  • Selected to the 1993 Kodak NAIA All-American team.
  • Member of the 1992 NAIA All-America second team.
  • Set school records for career scoring (1,837 points), most points scored for a single season (760), highest scoring average (24.5 ppg) and highest field goal percentage (.640).

International career

By the time McWilliams-Franklin graduated in 1993, there were no professional women's basketball leagues in the United States, so she played overseas. She played in Wolfenbuettel, Germany (1993-94); Contern, Luxembourg (1994-95); and in Galilee, Israel (1995-96).

She also spent the off-season playing in a professional league in 1999-2001Italy for Familia Schio. After the birth of her daughter, she went to Spain to play for Puig D'En Valls, Ibiza, Spain in 2003. As well as Brno, Czech Republic in 2004. Lavezzini Parma (Italy) in 2005. She was on the gold medal-winning team of the 1998 USA World Championship Team, as well as a member of the silver medal-winning 1997 World Championship Qualifying Team.

In 2005, McWilliams-Franklin played in the Korean women's team, the Shinhan Bank S-Birds, and toured Australia, taking on the Australian women's side, the Dandenong Rangers, in Melbourne. After the Korean season, she went to Salamanca, Spain, where she won a title, beating Barcelona in 5 games. She played half a season in Spartak Region, Moscow, Russia, then returned to Shinhan S-birds in Korea for the Korea professional season in 2006. She won the Korean title and MVP of the finals in 2006, beating the Samsung team, and Lauren Jackson in the finals, 3-2. After having knee surgery in the 2007 offseason, played in winter of 2007 in Israel. In 2008, she will join Galatasaray, Turkey.

POK career

She was drafted in 1996 (40th overall pick) and played two seasons for the Philadelphia Rage of the American Basketball League (ABL). She led the league in blocks with 1.5 per game and ranked fifth in field goal percentage (.528). She was also a member of the 1997 All-ABL second team.

WNBA career

McWilliams-Franklin was selected by the Orlando Miracle in the third round (32nd overall pick) of the 1999 WNBA Draft. She starred for the Miracle for 4 years and remained with the franchise even when the Miracle relocated to Uncasville, Connecticut, and was renamed the Connecticut Sun prior to the 2003 season. As of 2008, McWilliams-Frankin has played in six WNBA All-Star Games.

She was also a member of the starting team of the 2004 WNBA All-Star squad that played against a select group of players (who were also WNBA players) from the USA Basketball team. That game was held on August 4, 2004 at the historic Radio City Music Hall in New York City. The game was held in place of the regular WNBA All-Star Game and was a send-off for the USA Basketball squad prior to their participation at the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens, Greece.

McWilliams-Frankin was the recipient of the 2005 Kim Perrot Sportsmanship Award. She was awarded a Tiffany-designed trophy and $5,000. In addition, she has designated an additional $5,000 to go to the Mary Elizabeth House in Richmond, Virginia. She was also 2nd team all WNBA in 2005.

In February 2007, she was traded to the Los Angeles Sparks in exchange for the draft rights of Erika DeSouza and a future selection in the 2007 WNBA Draft.

On April 22, 2008 the Los Angeles Sparks traded McWilliams-Franklin to the Washington Mystics for Delisha Milton-Jones. On August 12, 2008 McWilliams- Franklin was traded to the Detroit Shock for Tasha Humphrey, Eshaya Murphy, and a second round pick in the 2009 WNBA draft.

Personal

McWilliams-Franklin has three daughters, and is married to Reginald Franklin. She also stated that she lives in the San Antonio area.

Vital statistics

External links

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