The Aliyah Boston Effect
Aliyah Boston was the 2023 number-one draft pick. She was selected by the Indiana Fever, a team that has been struggling for several seasons and in need of a franchise player. In the past three seasons, the Fever haven’t won more than six games. Just ten games into the 2023 season they are up to four wins, and have remained competitive in many of the losses.
Boston leads the league with a 66% field goal percentage and has been averaging 15.10 points, 7.9 rebounds, 2.3 assists, and 1.3 blocks.
Some of her recent performances include:
19 points, 8 rebounds vs Chicago
23 points, 14 rebounds, 6 assists vs Washington
10 points, 11 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 steals, 2 blocks vs Minnesota
25 points, 11 rebounds, 1 assist, 1 steal, 2 blocks vs Chicago
She is only the second rookie in league history to have a 25-point double-double while shooting 80% or better, and the youngest player in league history to have a stat line of 20 points, 10 rebounds, and 5 assists with 75% field goal shooting.
“Aliyah is not normal. She’s not the normal rookie,” said veteran teammate Erica Wheeler. “She understands what it means to be a great teammate…she’s a franchise player.”
Wheeler also credited Dawn Staley, who coached Boston for four years at the University of South Carolina.
High expectations are nothing new to Boston, who entered her college career a year after South Carolina great A’ja Wilson left. Boston cemented a legacy of her own being the most decorated player in program history. She was named the 2022 National Player of the Year, a 2x Defensive Player of the Year, leads the program with 82 double-doubles, and helped lead the team to the 2022 National Championship win.
Boston’s impact just ten games into the season is undeniable, and she is sure to further add to her legacy in Indiana.