Prep Charter grad Kahleah Copper becomes first Philly player since 2006 to be named in WNBA All-Star game

A Philadelphia native and Chicago Sky forward, Kahleah Copper was one of 12 WNBA players named to the 2021 All-Star team on Wednesday. Copper is the first Philly resident since Dawn Staley in 2006 to create the team.

The region has had its share of basketball talent. Locals like Wilmington-born Elena Delle Donne, Harrisburg’s Alyssa Thomas, and South Jersey stars Tamika Catchings and DeMya Walker are a few. But Copper joins five-time All-Star Staley as the only players from Philadelphia.

“It means everything,” Copper said. “First of all, thanks, Dawn, for smoothing the way. I’m sorry it’s been so long, but here I am.”

Copper has averaged 13.9 points and 4.9 rebounds this season. The Sky is second-seeded in the Eastern Conference and has an 8-1 record since Candace Parker’s season debut after suffering a left ankle injury.

Last season, Copper became one of the league’s most improved players in the WNBA “wubble” at the IMG Academy in Bradenton, Fla. She was a full-time starter for the first time in her career, scoring an average of 14.9 points per game, more than double her previous career high.

» READ MORE: Kahleah Copper, Prep Charter grad and Chicago Sky forward, becomes a star in the WNBA bubble

Her production is still high this season and she is surrounded by more star power. Teammates Candace Parker and Courtney Vandersloot were also named WNBA All-Stars.

New York Liberty star and Clayton, Del., born Betnijah Laney was also named to the All-Star team for the first time in her six-year career. Laney and Copper both played at Rutgers. Laney averages 19.7 points and 5.3 assists per game.

Laney is the daughter of former Cheyney State basketball star Yolanda Laney.

The 12 All-Stars were selected from the top 36 voters not included in Team USA’s 12-man roster. The All-Star team will play against Team USA in Las Vegas on ESPN on July 14 at 7 p.m.

“I just want to enjoy the experience with the greats,” Copper said. “I’m going to take all that in and just remember to have fun.”


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