Lynx C Sylvia Fowles named WNBA Defensive Player of the Year

US Sylvia Fowles (front) vies with Serbia's Nikolina Milic (back) and Sasa Cado (R) during the FIBA Women's Olympic Qualifying Tournament match between Serbia and USA, on February 6, 2020, in Belgrade.  ((Photo by ANDREJ ISAKOVIC/AFP via Getty Images))

The Minnesota Lynx host the Chicago Sky to open the WNBA Playoffs Sunday night, and they’ll do so with the best defensive player in the league.

The WNBA and Lynx announced center Sylvia Fowles has been named the league’s Defensive Player of the Year. She got the same honor from the Associated Press last week. She was also named All-WNBA Defensive First Team. It’s the fourth time in her career Fowles has been named the Defensive Player of the Year.

She joins Tamika Catchings as the only other player to win the honor at least four times. She received 31 votes from a national panel of sportswriters and broadcasters.

Fowles finished second in the WNBA in rebounds (10.1), steals (1.8) and blocks (1.8) per game. She’s the only player in WNBA history to finish in the top two in all those categories in the same season. Fowles had 13 double-doubles in 31 starts, and had six games of at least 20 points and 10 rebounds.

Fowles is also the all-time leading defensive rebounder in WNBA history. She has 3,712 career rebounds, including 2,654 defensive rebounds.

In 378 career regular season games, Fowles is averaging 15.8 points, 9.8 rebounds and 1.8 blocks per game. She’s a seven-time All-Star, four-time Olympic Gold medalist and three-time All-WNBA First Team pick.

The Lynx host the Chicago Sky at 4 p.m. at Target Center.