LOS ANGELES (AP) – Lisa Leslie will miss the WNBA season because the three-time league MVP is pregnant with her first child.

The 35-year-old Leslie is due in June, when the season will already be under way.

“I will be cheering my teammates on,” she said Thursday, when it was announced Lakers owner Jerry Buss had sold the team to season-ticket holders Kathy Goodman and Carla Christofferson.

Leslie, a three-time Olympic gold medalist as a U.S. national team stalwart, plans to return in 2008. “I want to play in the Olympics,” she said.

She led the Sparks to championships in 2001 and 2002 – the same season she became the first WNBA player to dunk in a game. The Sparks’ court at Staples Center is named for her.

AP-ES-12-07-06 1833EST

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