Phoenix Mercury and Suns owner Robert Sarver plans to sell both franchises.
The league had been investigating Sarver following allegations of racism and misogyny, first reported by ESPN in November 2021.
The WNBA Players Association said WNBA and NBA leadership “missed the mark” with Sarver’s punishment (a one-year suspension and $10 million fine) in a letter to the commissioners of both leagues.
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“In this instance, the NBA missed the mark on this essential order of operations because he has never genuinely communicated any level of contrition,” they said.
In the wake of the response came Sarver’s announcement on Wednesday that he has begun the process to sell the teams.
Mercury guard Diamond DeShields responded to Sarver’s announcement on Twitter, writing: “Well that’s a start!”
When Teresa Weatherspoon nailed one of the most iconic shots in basketball history, a contested half-court heave coming up the right side of the floor to win Game Two of the 1999 WNBA Finals, you might have forgotten that Becky Hammon was on the court as well. She was the first player to pile onto Weatherspoon as she sat on the floor in euphoria.
She played just over 200 minutes that season, her rookie year, a small role on a deep playoff team.
The Las Vegas Aces won their first title in franchise history, willed on by Hammon at the helm, rostering three rookies; Iliana Rupert, Aisha Sheppard, and Kierstan Bell.
Rupert actually played slightly more than Hammon did her rookie season, but all three first-year players had deep roots on the bench on a team with five All-Star caliber starters. Yet, they played a pivotal part in the best season in franchise history, even if it didn’t manifest in extensive playing time.
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