Efficiency is a valuable thing in basketball, and in all of Lynx history there may not have been a more efficient player than Tamika Williams.
The 6’2 forward had an outstanding career with the University of Connecticut Huskies, finishing her time there with an insane 70.3 shooting percentage, a school and NCAA record. She did so while scoring 10.6 points per game as well.
The Lynx took notice and made Williams the sixth pick in the 2002 WNBA Draft. She joined a Lynx squad led by Katie Smith looking to make the playoffs for the first time in team history. They did so in 2003, reaching the postseason where they faced the Los Angeles Sparks in the first round. Though the series didn’t go the Lynx’s way, Williams single handedly delivered the Lynx their first ever victory in a playoff game.
With the score tied up at 72 with 9.8 seconds remaining in Game 1 of the series and the Sparks inbounding the ball, Williams picked off the inbounds pass for a fast-break basket, sealing the victory for the Lynx. It was the culmination of a highly successful year for Williams. Also in 2003, she set a WNBA record for field goal accuracy in a season, with a percentage of 66.8.
Williams played with the Lynx for six seasons before being traded prior to the 2008 WNBA season. She doesn’t have the name recognition of some of the other Lynx stars, but her legacy is strong. You could say Williams was the creator of a very important Lynx tradition—winning playoff games.