Which participant wins MVP? Which staff will win the title?

The season for the 25th anniversary of the WNBA starts on Friday with four games. Will the Seattle Storm be the favorite to repeat and win the title in 2021? Will the Las Vegas Aces break through for their first championship? Or will a former dynasty return to the helm? A’ja Wilson and Breanna Stewart top the league MVP again, but they have company in the running. At least that is what our panel predicts.

ESPN analysts Rebecca Lobo and LaChina Robinson, play-by-play announcer Ryan Ruocco, ESPN writers Katie Barnes, Kevin Pelton and Mechelle Voepel, and Sean Hurd of The Undefeated make their preseason picks for the course of the season.

Which player do you choose for MVP in the preseason?

Katie Barnes: A’ja Wilson, Las Vegas aces
Sean Hurd: A’ja Wilson, Las Vegas aces
Rebecca Lobo: Breanna Stewart, storm in Seattle
Kevin Pelton: Napheesa Collier, Minnesota Lynx
LaChina Robinson: A’ja Wilson, Las Vegas Aces
Ryan Ruocco: Breanna Stewart, Seattle Storm
Mechelle Voepel: Breanna Stewart, Seattle Storm

Who is your pick for preseason rookie of the year?

Barnes: DiJonai Carrington, Connecticut Sun.
Hurd: DiJonai Carrington, Connecticut Sun.
Lobo: Jasmine Walker, Los Angeles Sparks
Pelton: Charli Collier, Dallas Wings
Robinson: DiJonai Carrington, Connecticut Sun.
Ruocco: DiJonai Carrington, Connecticut Sun.
Voepel: Charli Collier, Dallas Wings

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Who is your preseason defensive player of the year?

Barnes: Brittney Griner, Phoenix Mercury
Hurd: Napheesa Collier, Minnesota Lynx
Lobo: Brittney Griner, Phoenix Mercury
Pelton: A’ja Wilson, Las Vegas aces
Robinson: Brittney Griner, Phoenix Mercury
Ruocco: Napheesa Collier, Minnesota Lynx
Voepel: A’ja Wilson, Las Vegas Aces

Which five players make up the All-WNBA First Team?

Listed in positional order. One center, two strikers and two guards:

Barnes: Brittney Griner, Phoenix Mercury; A’ja Wilson, Las Vegas Aces; Breanna Stewart, Seattle Storm; Chelsea Gray, Las Vegas Aces; Courtney Vandersloot, Chicago Sky

Hurd: Brittney Griner, Phoenix Mercury; A’ja Wilson, Las Vegas Aces; Breanna Stewart, Seattle Storm; Courtney Vandersloot, Chicago Sky; Arike Ogunbowale, Dallas Wings

Lobo: Jonquel Jones, Connecticut Sun; Breanna Stewart, Seattle Storm; A’ja Wilson, Las Vegas Aces; Arike Ogunbowale, Dallas Wings; Courtney Vandersloot, Chicago Sky

Pelton: Brittney Griner, Phoenix Mercury; Napheesa Collier, Minnesota Lynx; Breanna Stewart, Seattle Storm; Courtney Vandersloot, Chicago Sky; Arike Ogunbowale, Dallas Wings

Robinson: A’ja Wilson, Las Vegas Aces; Breanna Stewart, Seattle Storm; Elena Delle Donne, Washington Mystics; Skylar Diggins-Smith, Phoenix Mercury; Diamond DeShields, Chicago Sky

Ruocco: A’ja Wilson, Las Vegas Aces; Breanna Stewart, Seattle Storm; Elena Delle Donne, Washington Mystics; Courtney Vandersloot, Chicago Sky; Diana Taurasi, Phoenix Mercury

Voepel: Breanna Stewart, Seattle Storm; A’ja Wilson, Las Vegas Aces; Liz Cambage, Las Vegas Aces; Courtney Vandersloot, Chicago Sky; Arike Ogunbowale, Dallas Wings

Which teams meet in the WNBA finals?

Barnes: Chicago Sky vs. Las Vegas Aces
Hurd: Las Vegas Aces vs. Minnesota Lynx
Pelton: Las Vegas Aces vs. Minnesota Lynx
Robinson: Las Vegas Aces vs. Washington Mystics
Ruocco: Las Vegas Aces vs. Seattle Storm
Voepel: Las Vegas Aces vs. Phoenix Mercury

Which team will win the WNBA title in 2021?

Barnes: Las Vegas aces
Hurd: Las Vegas aces
Pelton: Minnesota Lynx
Robinson: Las Vegas aces
Ruocco: Seattle Storm
Voepel: Las Vegas Aces

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