MIES (3x3) - 2016 was an eventful year for 3x3 and we look at the 10 women who made the biggest impact this season. We’ll come back tomorrow with the 10 men who made 3x3 in 2016 and finish our trilogy on Friday with the 10 teams of the year.
Marjorie Carpréaux (Belgium) World Rank: 88
One of the most entertaining players of the season. Women and men combined. The diminutive playmaker did not win any medals this year but her no-look passes were as tasty as a Belgian waffle.
Astou Gaye (France) World Rank: 14
The French teenager dominated the game inside and out in 2016 and made 'La Marseillaise' a summer hit at both the U18 World and U18 European Championships. She also showed girls shoot it better by winning gold at the mixed Shoot-Out Contest at the U18 European Championships.
Veronika Kanyasi (Hungary) World Rank: 58
After winning gold at the U18 European Championships and bronze at the U18 World Championships last year, we wondered if the Hungarian teenager could do better in 2016. But Kanyasi said yes she can and finished the year with a gold medal at the skills contest of the U18 World Championships and a silver medal and a spot on the Team of the Tournament at the U18 European Championships. More good news? She’s still eligible to play at the U18 European Championships in 2017, which could be her third straight appearance at the event.
The 25-year-old did not win anything this year but she taught us a lesson of courage at the European Championships. After going down with an ugly mouth injury that required more stitches than a fight with Joanna Jędrzejczyk, the 2015 European Games top scorer came back on the court like a boss. We’ll hear more of her next year, no doubt.
Dora Medgyessy (Hungary) World Rank: 6
Medgyessy was the brain of the most entertaining women’s 3x3 team to watch in 2016 (Team Hungary). The 30-year-old showed an ability to dish out passes as fancy as her hair-cut and a tendency to hit the clutch shots.
Paula Palomares (Spain) World Rank: 131
We knew the Spaniard could shoot and she proved it by winning a silver medal at the Shoot-Out Contest of the 3x3 World Championships. What we didn’t know is she was giving free flamenco lessons like she did against Ukraine.
Michaela Uhrova (Czech Republic) World Rank: 12
Forget about A Tribe Called Quest, the two-time Olympian had the best comeback of the year. Uhrova captained Czech Republic to an unbelievable run at the 3x3 World Championships, which included a game-winner against the US in the semi-finals, a gold medal and an MVP trophy.
Sonia Ursu (Romania) World Rank: 52
Don’t let the arty Instagram account distract you, Ursu means bear in Romanian and when Ursu steps on the court, she’s all grit like a growling grizzly. The 23-year-old made some big shots this year to lead her country to a shining silver medal at the 3x3 European Championships.
Megan Walker (USA) World Rank: 265
Be ready to hear this name for years to come. Megan Walker showed an unlimited offensive repertoire at the U18 World Championships in June. Her defense also looked pretty good to use when she combined with team-mate Sidney Cooks for one of the best swats of the season.