The Minnesota Lynx today announced that the team has re-signed former Lynx and University of Minnesota women’s basketball star center Janel McCarville. Per team policy, terms of the deal were not released. Prior to the 2015 season, McCarville informed the Lynx she would sit out for that season.
McCarville was acquired by Minnesota from New York on March 1, 2013 following a two-year hiatus, along with Tulsa’s second-round pick in the 2014 WNBA draft, in a three-team trade that sent Candice Wiggins to Tulsa. In her first season with the Lynx, she started 32 games averaging 6.3 points, 4.3 rebounds and a career-high 2.9 assists per game while shooting 48.8% from the field and 80.4% from the free throw line. In 2014, McCarville concluded her second season with the Lynx, and eighth in the WNBA, by starting all 34 games for the second time in her career (also 2010 for New York) and averaging 7.9 points and 4.8 rebounds in 27.0 minutes per game.
Most recently, McCarville played for Abdullah Gul in the Turkish League. She played in 23 Turkish League games averaging 7.4 points, 5.3 rebounds and 2.1 assists. She also appeared in 12 Euroleague games, averaging 7.9 points, 4.8 rebounds and 1.7 assists.
Originally selected by the Charlotte Sting with the first overall pick in the 2005 WNBA Draft, McCarville was acquired by the New York Liberty with the third overall pick in the WNBA Dispersal Draft on Jan. 8, 2007. McCarville emerged with the Liberty in 2007, being named the 2007 WNBA Most Improved Player after averaging 10.4 points and 4.8 rebounds on 54.6% shooting from the floor. She continued to thrive over the next three seasons with the Liberty, averaging 11.2 points on 51.1% shooting, 5.4 rebounds and 2.1 assists in her four years with New York.
A native of Steven’s Point, Wisconsin, McCarville teamed up with Lindsay Whalen for three seasons (2002-04) at the University of Minnesota. In her four-year collegiate career, McCarville and the Gophers never missed the NCAA Tournament, including reaching the program’s first ever Final Four appearance in 2004. A two-time Wade Trophy Finalist (2004, 2005), an award given annually to the best women’s basketball player in the nation, McCarville finished her collegiate career with a number of school records, including field goal percentage (.582), blocks (196) and double-doubles (49). In addition, she currently ranks fifth in scoring (1,835), second in rebounding (1,206), seventh in assists (310) and third in steals (273).
As a junior, McCarville was a key member of Minnesota’s 2004 Final Four team, averaging 19.4 points, 15.0 rebounds and 4.4 assists on 57.4% shooting during the Gopher’s five-game tournament run. She was especially brilliant in the Elite Eight, as the seventh-seeded Gophers upset top-seeded Duke, scoring 20 points, grabbing 18 rebounds and dishing out 6 assists in Minnesota’s 82-75 win. As a senior the next season, McCarville led Minnesota back to the Sweet Sixteen for just the third time in school history, averaging 13.0 points, 13.3 rebounds, 3.0 assists and 3.3 blocks during tournament play.[Minnesota Lynx press release]