Even though her playing career is over, Lindsay Whalen is continuing to make history in her home state of Minnesota.

The Minnesota Lynx announced Thursday morning that Whalen will become the first player in franchise history to have her number retired and hanging in the rafters at Target Center.

Pretty fitting that the first player in Minnesota’s history to have her Lynx jersey retired comes from the Land of 10,000 Lakes.

“I don’t know if you can live a more charmed sporting life than what Lindsay Whalen has experienced in the state of Minnesota,” Lynx head coach and general manager Cheryl Reeve said at the team’s press conference on Thursday at Target Center.

“It has changed the game of basketball in our state. So to have Lindsay Whalen’s jersey hanging in the rafters at Target Center is fitting.”

The Hutchinson native, Golden Gophers and Lynx legend will see her No. 13 Lynx jersey go up in the rafters on June 8 against the Los Angeles Sparks (even more fitting, right?) at Target Center. The game, which will start 2:30 p.m., will be nationally televised on ABC.

“This is a tremendous honor, not one I take lightly. It shows what you can do when you work hard. … Just what we were all able to do as teammates and coaches, day-in and day-out,” Whalen said at the press conference. ““I just want to mess with LA one more time, mess with their pre-game routine. … That will be good and we’ll mess with them.

“To be the first one out of all the amazing players, it’s truly special. It will be a special day for my family, for the Lynx family and the Gophers family. It will be cool.”

Whalen, who grew up roughly an hour from where her jersey will forever hang as a member of the Lynx, retired following the conclusion of last season as the WNBA’s all-time leader in wins (323 wins). She ranked third in WNBA history in assists, has made six All-Star appearances, 13 trips to the postseason, eight WNBA Finals, two Olympic gold medals and has won four WNBA titles in her storied career.

She also remains the only player in WNBA history to record 5,000 points, 2,000 assists and 1,500 rebounds.

“My jersey wouldn’t be up there if we didn’t have success and we didn’t win four championships. … None of this would have happened without my teammates,” Whalen added at the press conference. “We all of this together and so many people on our team sacrificed so many different things.

“We all gave up a lot, but we did it together and wanted to do it together. And now we have all these rings and all these trophies.”

Although the stats throughout her basketball career in general – especially in the WNBA – have been impressive, Whalen leaves the Lynx franchise atop multiple franchise leaderboards for her home state team. That includes ranking first in franchise history in assists (1,394), second in games played (283) and fourth in scoring (3,233).

“It’s a special day for our franchise. … The nine years that we spent together, just incredible. Especially when you think of the run we went on,” Reeve said of her time with Whalen in Minnesota. “When you talk about the banners, the rings and now the jersey, what that symbolizes is excellence.”

Whalen was able to make WNBA history in her home state of Minnesota throughout her career with the Lynx.

And on June 8 prior to her now former teammates facing off against one of their biggest rivals, she will continue to make history right here at home while becoming the first player in franchise history to have her jersey retired.

Very fitting, for sure.

“I don’t think there’s a better way to say to a player ‘thank you’ for all that they’ve done,” Reeve said. “Congratulations to Lindsay Whalen.”

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