GB international point guard Kennedy Leonard won the WBBL Trophy Final MVP award after once again coming close to a triple-double with an amazing 21 points, nine assists, seven steals and six rebounds as London Lions beat Nottingham Wildcats 96-64 live on Sky Sports.
Lions led from tip-to-buzzer and it was Leonard who set the tone as the league’s steals and assists leader nabbed an early steal and set-up her captain Shanice Beckford-Norton for a transition lay-up. Leonard followed that with a pair of three-pointers in the opening three minutes and Lions led 13-2.
The 25 year-old joined Lions from a professional season in Germany and after four years at the University of Colorado, and she played 35 minutes in total in this final, keeping her team ticking over throughout as their double-digit lead was never threatened.
She shot an efficient 4-6 (66%) inside and 3-8 (37%) from long-range while making all four of her free-throws. She handed out her nine assists – which tied the WBBL Trophy Final record – to five different players as she got her teammates involved throughout.
Talking to Sky Sports after the game, Leonard commented,
“I feel so excited, I don’t know how to explain it, I’m just so excited that we won.
“I wish I could have got some more, got more people involved, but a win’s a win and I’m so proud of us for the way that we handled the game and for bringing a trophy back to London.”
Her Head Coach, Mark Clark, added,
“It’s always good to have a coach on the floor, and Ken and I have been on the same page from day one. Her teammates appreciate her because she makes them better, and she has some great partners in Shanice (Beckford-Norton) and Cassie (Breen) – they’re all a tough ask in the backcourt.”
For Lions, it was a first ever piece of silverware in the WBBL, having lost in the Trophy Final in 2016.