Diana Taurasi is considered the greatest basketball player in Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA) history. She is tall, skillful, talented, and beautiful. She is a professional basketball player who wears jersey number 3 and currently plays for the Phoenix Mercury franchise. She was even nicknamed “White Mamba” by the Black Mamba himself, Kobe Bryant, for her ability to pull her team out of tough corners by scoring highly needed points at very important times. Here are facts you must know about her…
Who is Diana Taurasi? Bio
Diana Taurasi was born in Glendale, Los Angeles as Diana Lorena Taurasi but was raised and grew up in Chino, California. Her birth date is given as June 11, 1982, and she was born to Mario and Liliana Taurasi. She can be said to have picked up her sports gene from her father, Mario, who was a professional soccer player and played as a goalkeeper in Italy. Mario was born in Italy but his family moved to South America while he was very young and so he grew up in Argentina. Diana’s mother, on the other hand, is Argentine by origin which makes Diana Taurasi of mixed ancestry – Italian and Argentine. However, she was born in the United States as her parents moved to California before she was born which points to the fact that her nationality is American.
Diana has a sibling, an elder sister named Jessika Taurasi. She (Diana) attended Don Antonio Lugo High School where she revealed her superb talents in the game of basketball. Her talent never went unnoticed as accolades began to pour in. Diana was named “Ms. Basketball State Player of the Year” consecutively in 1999 and 2000. She also received the Cheryl Miller Award for the best player in Southern California which was presented by Los Angeles Times in 2000. That same year, Diana has voted the Naismith and Parade Magazine National High School Player of the Year. She ranked fifth in the state rankings with 2,156 points, therefore she was named a WBCA All-American Which only meant she would be selected for the 2000 WBCA High School All-America Game where she put on an impressive performance that earned her the MVP honors.
After spectacular and eye-catching high school showings in basketball, Diana gained admission to study at the University of Connecticut (UConn) and also continued her majestic basketball career with the school’s women’s basketball team. Playing as a shooting and point guard, her average per game in her college career was 15.0 points, 4.3 rebounds, and 4.5 assists, and again, her efforts were not unnoticed. It was enough to lead the team to three back-to-back NCAA championship titles and even earned her recognition at the national level. She was nominated to join Prudence Crandall as the state’s heroine by none other than Senator Thomas Gaffey. She won the Wade Trophy and Associated Press Player of the Year award in 2003 and also won consecutive Naismith College Player of the Year awards in 2003 and 2004.
Basketball Career – WNBA
Dianna Taurasi began her professional basketball career in 2004 after she was selected in the 2004 WNBA Draft by Phoenix Mercury in the first overall pick. With her height, she initially played in the forward position. Of course, as expected, her fine form in college continued and she recorded 121 three-pointers in her debut season, winning the WNBA Rookie of the Year Award. her first title came in 2oo7 when they beat defending champions, Detroit Shock to win the WNBA Finals. Her international career has seen her play in Russia and Turkey with Dynamo Moscow, Spartak Moscow, Fenerbahce Istanbul, Galatasaray Medical Park, and UMMC Ekaterinburg.
To date, Diana has won three WNBA championship titles – 2007, 2009, and 2014 – winning the MVP Awards in the Finals on two of those occasions – 2009 and 2014. She has also been selected to seven WNBA All-Star teams and nine All-WNBA teams. In 2009, she was named WNBA Most Valuable Player. She is presently WNBA’s all-time leading scorer with a total of 8,000 points (June 5, 2018 – a figure she would likely stretch further in coming seasons). All these achievements earned her a place as one of the leading WNBA’s Top 15 Players of All Time (as voted by WNBA fans in 2011).
On the international scene, Diana Taurasi has won the Olympic gold medal with the United States Women Basketball team four times – 2004, 2008, 2012, and 2016., becoming only one among nine women who have won an NCAA Championship title, an Olympic Gold Medal, and a WNBA Championship title. She earns $49,000 annually and her net worth is estimated to be $1.5 million.
Is She Gay Or Lesbian?
Diana Taurasi has always focused on her professional life while keeping her private life very private and so far away from the prying eyes of the press. It was never suspected that she was gay or lesbian, in fact, her sexuality was never in focused. It was assumed that she was only focused on her work and career when she once stated that she never had a boyfriend. Back then, no one read in-between the lines to see that when she said “she didn’t have a boyfriend”, she meant she was sexually not interested in men. Looking back now, of course, we can see the hints to the fact that was has always been gay/lesbian, but back then, no one suspected.
However, her marriage to fellow professional basketball player and ex-teammate, Penny Taylor has revealed her sexual orientation as gay or lesbian as she can’t hide it anymore. Even while they were gating, it was kept a secret as she said they never wanted it to be an issue of media discussions and deliberations.
Married to Penny Taylor – Wife
Penny Taylor whose birth name is given as Penelope Jane Taylor was born May 24, 1981. She is an Australian-born ex-basketball player who retired after the 2016 WNBA season. Her last club was the Phoenix Mercury, member of the Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA), where she had won three championships – in 2007, 2009, and 2014. Penny Taylor was born to Michael Taylor and Denna Noble in Melbourne, Australia alongside two other siblings – Heather Taylor, an older sister, and Phillip Taylor, her younger brother. She studied at Upwey High School in Upwey, Victoria, before proceeding to the Australian Institute of Sport in Canberra on a scholarship.
The Australian Institute of Sport (AIS) became her first club for the 1997/98 season and she won her first title – the Women’s National Basketball League (WNBL) title – with them in 1999. Her career has seen her travel to play in Italy, China, Russia, and Turkey. For her country, Australia, Taylor, with the women’s (basketball) national team, has won one gold and two bronze medals at the FIBA World Championships, in addition to winning two Olympic silver medals. Upon her retirement from active basketball in 2016, she was appointed by her the Phoenix Mercury to serve as Director of Player Development and Performance, a position she currently serves in.
Penny Taylor is a lesbian and is married to her lesbian partner and former (Phoenix Mercury) teammate, Diana Taurasi. They were wedded on May 13, 2017, barely 24-hours to the new season. The couple welcomed their first child on March 1, 2018. The boy was named Leo Michael Taurasi-Taylor. Unlike Diana who has no ‘official’ prior relationships, Taylor has been married before – to a man. She got married to Rodrigo Rodriguez Gil, a Brazilian beach volleyball player in 2005 but the marriage ended in divorce just three years after.
Height and Quick Facts About Diana Taurasi
Name: Diana Lorena Taurasi
Known as: Diana Taurasi
Nickname: White Mamba
Profession: Basketball player
Birth Date: June 11, 1982
Birth Place: Glendale, Los Angeles
Spouse: Penny Taylor
Children: 1 (Leo Michael Taurasi-Taylor)
Height: 6 ft (1.83 m)
Weight: 74 kg (163 lbs)
Eye Color: Brown
Hair Color: Black
Net Worth: $1.5 million