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Former WNBA Great Margo Dydek Dies

Former WNBA player Margo Dydek has died after suffering a heart attack at her home in Brisbane, Australia. She was 37. Dydek was the top WNBA draft pick in 1998, the second season for the women's pro league and played for the Utah Starzz (who moved to San Antonio), Connecticut and Los Angeles.

Los Angeles Sparks Margo Dydek, right, scores a basket on September 14, 2008. Kevork Djansezian/AP hide caption

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Kevork Djansezian/AP

Los Angeles Sparks Margo Dydek, right, scores a basket on September 14, 2008.

Kevork Djansezian/AP

Dydek was also the tallest player ever to compete in the WNBA, and was fondly known as "Large Marge". Sports Illustrated says that's because she was 7'2" and still holds the record for most career blocks: 877 over 323 games. Born in Poland, Dydek had played for the Polish national team was coaching a development team in Australia, after a long career playing in the U.S. and Europe.

ESPN has a look at Dydek's accomplishments, noting her imposing height made it easy to dunk baskets, but she focused instead on her outside game - preferring to hit 3-pointers.

The AP reports Dydek was pregnant, but after suffering the heart attack she was placed in a medically induced coma and the child also died. She is survived by her husband David, and two young sons. Funeral details aren't known.

Deseret News columnist Brad Rock fondly remembers Dydek as a humble person who folded herself into a Chevy Cavalier, spoke several languages and was so popular with Utah Starzz fans she occasionally got double-booked for appearances.