My Shot

Balancing It All and Standing Tall

My Shot

For Ages: 12 - 99
Elena Delle Donne, 2015 WNBA MVP and 2016 Olympic gold medalist, shares her inspirational story of being a young basketball prodigy who gave up an impressive basketball scholarship for family and self-discovery.

Elena Delle Donne has always forged her own path. During her first year of college, she walked away from a scholarship and chance to play for Geno Aurriema at UConn—the most prestigious women’s college basketball program—so she could stay in her home state of Delaware and be close to her older sister, Lizzie, who has several disabilities and can only communicate through hand-over-hand signing.

Burned out and questioning her passion for basketball, she attended the University of Delaware and took up volleyball for a year. Eventually she found her way back to her first love, playing basketball for the Blue Hens, ultimately leading them, a mid-major team, to the Sweet Sixteen. She went on to become the second overall selection during the 2013 WNBA draft and the WNBA’s 2015 MVP.

Elena Delle Donne delivers a powerful and motivational story of overcoming the challenges of competitive sports through balancing hard work and the support of a loving family.
  • Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers | 
  • 272 pages | 
  • ISBN 9781534412309 | 
  • March 2018 | 
  • Grades 7 and up
List Price £9.49 (price may vary by retailer)

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About the Author

Elena Delle Donne
Photograph by The Players Tribune/Todd Rosenberg

Elena Delle Donne

Elena Delle Donne has been a professional women’s basketball player since 2013, when she was selected by the Chicago Sky second overall in the WNBA draft. She was the 2015 WNBA MVP and won the gold medal with the USA’s women’s basketball team in the 2016 Olympics. She is the global ambassador for the Special Olympics and became the first national ambassador for the Lyme Research Alliance. Elena also plays host to De11e Donne Academy, a basketball camp that runs throughout the year, where she mentors and coaches girls ages seven to eighteen. She now plays for the Washington, DC, Mystics.

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