Destanni Henderson belongs in the WNBA.
The 5-foot-7 point guard silenced anyone who doubts that statement on Friday night, helping the L.A. Sparks overcome a 17-point deficit to defeat the Dallas Wings, 76-74. Henderson, a South Carolina alum, scored 18 points in the win, just one point shy of her career-best.
“Destanni Henderson allowed us an extra attacker on the floor tonight, she defended with her speed, she really made a lot of things happen,” said Sparks head coach Curt Miller.
Henderson, the No. 20 overall pick in the 2022 WNBA Draft, played 36 games with the Indiana Fever last year, but was waived in May. The Sparks, who have dealt with a spate of injuries and illness this season, picked up Henderson via an emergency hardship contract on June 16.
“Even if it’s a hardship,” Henderson told the Los Angeles Times. “It’s just one step to get me closer to my goal.”
“Henny has proven that (she belongs in this league),” said Jordin Canada, who scored the Sparks’ final four points in Friday’s win.
“Tonight just showed that she’s very capable of being in this league and we’re very grateful to have her here.”
As for Henny herself?
“I felt great. Once I started to get in the flow of things, just attacking and finding my teammates open… I just stayed focused the whole game.”
The Wings and Sparks meet again on Sunday (3 p.m. ET, ABC).
Destanni Henderson with the tough finish to end the half 😤 pic.twitter.com/MvRnHVlXCT— espnW (@espnW) June 24, 2023
Destanni Henderson with the tough finish to end the half 😤 pic.twitter.com/MvRnHVlXCT