UNCASVILLE, Conn. (May 1, 2015) – Connecticut Sun veteran guard Katie Douglas announced today she is retiring after 14 seasons in the WNBA.
“This was a very difficult decision for me because basketball has been such a big part of my life, but I believe I am making the right choice,” Douglas said Friday. “My back has not responded to treatment the way I hoped it would. I have no expectation that I would be able to play at a level that is acceptable to me, so rather than compete as a shell of myself, I am choosing to retire.”
One of the greatest three-point shooters in WNBA history, Douglas was selected to the Eastern Conference All-Star team for the fifth time in her career during a remarkable comeback season in 2014. She led the Sun with 64 made threes, and played a team-high 1,040 minutes, averaging 13.2 points with 69 assists and 106 rebounds in 32 games. She became the all-time franchise leader in made threes at Tulsa last July 5th, and finishes her career with 383 in a Sun uniform.
“I know this is not how KT wanted to leave the game, but she made a significant contribution to the Connecticut Sun and our fans,” Connecticut Sun Vice President Chris Sienko said. “It is amazing the impact a single player can have on an organization and her spirit, competitiveness and humor will be hard to replace.”
A two-time All American at Purdue, where she led the Boilermakers to the first NCAA women’s basketball championship in program history, Douglas was selected with the10th overall pick in the first round of the 2001 WNBA Draft by the Orlando Miracle. When the Miracle were purchased by Mohegan Sun, and relocated to Connecticut prior to the start of the 2003 WNBA season, Douglas began to evolve from role player to star.
“After being drafted in 2001, Katie was there when the first generation of WNBA legends – Swoopes, Cooper, Staley and Leslie – passed their torch, and she ran with it,” WNBA President Laurel J. Richie said. “Katie’s grit and determination helped drive her to incredible heights, including five All-Star appearances. Now, she passes the ball to the next generation of players, whose dreams would not have been possible without her contributions to the game.”
During five seasons in Connecticut, from 2003-07, Douglas averaged 13.4 points while collecting 444 assists, 256 steals and 272 made three-pointers. In that span, the Sun qualified for the playoffs each year, advancing to the WNBA Finals twice, and the Eastern Conference Finals four times while compiling a regular-season record of 104-64 (.615).
In 2007, Douglas set single-season career highs with 577 points, 207 made field goals, 158 rebounds, 125 assists and 65 steals. Douglas also earned her first two Eastern Conference All-Star selections in 2006 and 2007. She was the MVP of the 2006 All-Star game.
Douglas joined the Indiana Fever in 2008, averaging 15.4 points per game during six seasons while starting in all 166 games while helping her team reach two WNBA Finals. She had a career-high 80 made three-pointers in 2012, the year the Fever won their first championship. She made a career-best 119 free throws during the 2008 season.
Limited to just four games with the Indiana Fever in 2013 because of a severe back injury that required offseason surgery, Douglas revived her career with the franchise that originally drafted her, signing a free agent contract with the Connecticut Sun on March 24, 2014. Douglas made an immediate impact, scoring in double-figures 24 times with 19 multiple three-point games. She led the Sun in made threes and made free throws, and led the team in scoring eight times.
“It was a pleasure to have Katie with us last season,” Sun head coach Anne Donovan said. “She became an integral part of our team in such a short period of time. Aside from her trademark three-point shooting prowess, KT logged the most minutes of any player. That attests to her toughness and to her importance to our team.”
Katie wrote a letter to fans about her retirement. Read what she has to say.
Here’s a look at where Douglas stands historically in the WNBA:
- Five-time WNBA All-Star
- Five-time member of the WNBA All-Defensive Team
- Ranks fourth in WNBA history in career steals (623)
- Ranks fifth in WNBA history in made threes (727)
- Ranks eight in scoring (5,563 points)
- Ranks 11th in made field goals (1,926)
- Ranks 14th in assists (1,075)
- First player in WNBA history to surpass 500 steals and 500 made threes
- All-time leader in Sun history in made threes (383)
- Finishes career ranked fourth in Sun history in points(2,999), assists (605) and made field goals (1,027)
- Ranks in the top five of 10 different WNBA playoff statistical categories
- Ranks third in WNBA Playoff history in made threes (95)
- Tied for third with Tamika Catchings in WNBA history for playoff games played (56)
- Ranks fourth in total playoff minutes (1,833)
- Ranks fifth in total playoff points (730)