In the build-up to the celebrations we look back at the history of the WNBL awards and the greats that have shaped the game in this country and around the world.
Today we look back at the emergence of Australia as a production line for some of the world’s best players around the turn of the century.
In a dominance similar to that of Odgen, Maher, Nykiel and Foster, it was the emergence of Lauren Jackson in 1999 that had the Australian basketball universe in a spin.
Jackson guided the AIS, a team sporting names such as Penny Taylor and 2012 WNBL MVP candidate Suzy Batkovic, to their first and only WNBL Championship, winning the first of her four MVPs in the process.
The move across town to the Canberra Capitals the next season led to more premiership and individual success for the Jackson juggernaut, sharing the 2000 award with Sydney Flames star Trish Fallon.
After once being part of the most potent one-two acts in the WNBL at the AIS, Penny Taylor’s move to the Dandenong Rangers brought individual success as she became just the fourth player in league history to claim back-to-back MVPs in 2001 and 2002.
With a third WNBL crown in the purse, Jackson again went after MVP silverware, becoming the first player to win four MVPs on the back of consecutive honours in 2003 and 2004.
Look out for Part Four available on the WNBL Website Monday.
The Basketball Australia MVP Awards Night takes place on Monday 26 March at Crown Palladium, Melbourne.