She is one of the most famous women's basketball player in the world. After a highly successful career at the University of Connecticut, Phoenix Mercury guard Diana Taurasi has continued her successful basketball career at the pro level. In her first eight seasons in the league, she has averaged 20.8 points, 4.3 rebounds and 4.0 assists per game.
She was the 2009 WNBA MVP, a six-time All-WNBA First-Team selection and a four-time All-Star. She has been one of the faces of the league since winning the WNBA Rookie of the Year award in 2004.
Perhaps most impressive, she has two WNBA championships, three NCAA championships and two Olympic gold medals on her resume.
Recently, Taurasi answered questions for iHoops.com about her life as a professional basketball player, and some of her general tips for playing better basketball.
What does it take to be a successful professional basketball player?
A lot of dedication and hard work. Everyone in this league has a lot of gifts, a lot of talents. It just depends on how much hard work you're willing to put in.
What kind of sacrifices do you make to have a WNBA career?
A lot of time away from my family, a lot of traveling. You sacrifice a lot, but you have to see the other side of it where you have an amazing way of seeing life.
What's a typical game day like for a WNBA player? What's a typical off day like?
On game day, I wake up around 8, have three cups of coffee and some oatmeal. I go to the gym, shoot from 10 til 11, ice down and watch some video. I head home to nap from 2 to 4, then head back to the building (for the game).
On off days, I wake up around 8, have three cups of coffee and some oatmeal. I then go to the gym and shoot and lift.
What are some things to keep in mind when playing man-to-man defense?
You always want to stay between the basket and your man.
What is the toughest shot to defend?
The hook shot, and there was no one who could shot it like Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.