Sandrine Gruda

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Sandrine Gruda
Sandrine Gruda 7.jpg
No. 7 – Los Angeles Sparks
Position Center
League WNBA
Personal information
Born (1987-06-25) 25 June 1987 (age 31)
Cannes, Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur
Nationality French
Listed height 6 ft 4 in (1.93 m)
Listed weight 185 lb (84 kg)
Career information
WNBA draft 2007 / Round: 1 / Pick: 13th overall
Selected by the Connecticut Sun
Playing career 2005–present
Career history
2005–2007 US Valenciennes
2007–2016 UMMC Ekaterinburg
2008–2010 Connecticut Sun
2014 Los Angeles Sparks
2016 Los Angeles Sparks
2016–2017 Fenerbahçe Istanbul
2017 Los Angeles Sparks
Career highlights and awards
Stats at WNBA.com

Sandrine Gruda (born June 25, 1987) is a French professional basketball player who is currently plays for the Los Angeles Sparks of the Women's National Basketball Association (WNBA). Her primary position is center.

Before the WNBA

She is the daughter of Ulysse Gruda, who played for the French men's national basketball team, and grew up on Martinique. Before joining the WNBA, Gruda played professionally for the French club Union Sportive Valenciennes Olympic. She began playing on senior level in 2002, and professionally in 2005.[1] She was voted the best European young women's player of the year 2006.[2]

WNBA career

Gruda during the 2017 finals

Gruda was drafted 13th overall in the 2007 WNBA Draft by the Connecticut Sun. She did not join the Sun until the 2008 season. She was highly touted by head coach Mike Thibault before joining the team. During her rookie season, she provided solid bench play and with her height and length, was a consistent rebounder and shot-blocker.

In 2014, she returned to the WNBA after a three-year absence, joining the Los Angeles Sparks as a reserve on the roster. Gruda sat out the 2015 season to prepare for the 2016 Summer Olympics with the France women's national basketball team in the qualifying tournament.[3] In 2016, Gruda re-signed with the Sparks after the Olympic break.[3] Later on in the season, Gruda would win her first WNBA championship with the Sparks after they defeated the Minnesota Lynx 3-2 in the Finals. Following the championship victory, after not being re-signed during free agency, Gruda returned to the Sparks midway through the 2017 season.[4] The Sparks would go on to advance to the Finals for the second season in a row, after defeating the Phoenix Mercury in a 3-game sweep, setting up a rematch with the Lynx. However, the Sparks would lose to the Lynx in five games.

Overseas career

She played for the Russian club UMMC Ekaterinburg from 2007 to 2016. On July 6, 2016, Fenerbahçe Istanbul announced her transfer to the club.

National team

Gruda is the starting center for the France women's national basketball team, and led her team to the EuroBasket 2009 title. She was the best scorer and rebounder of the French side, and was voted to the all-tournament team.[5] She also took part in the World Championship 2006 and the EuroBasket 2007,[2] reaching the quarter-finals both times.

References

  1. ^ Gruda For President fibaeurope.com
  2. ^ a b Gruda Honoured As Young Player Of The Year Archived 2008-07-19 at the Wayback Machine. eurobasketwomen2007.com
  3. ^ a b Sparks Sign Veteran Forward/Center Sandrine Gruda
  4. ^ Sparks sign veteran Sandrine Gruda
  5. ^ Gruda, Dumerc Highlight All-Tournament Team eurobasketwomen2009.com

External links

  • Sandrine Gruda Official Site sandrinegruda.com
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