Even before WNBA free agency officially began, there were a few landscape-shifting trades — rare January trades for the league. Teams can begin negotiating with free agents on Saturday. Those deals can be signed beginning Feb. 1. The salary cap for 2023 is $1,420,500, according to Her Hoop Stats. Teams must have at least 11 players with a maximum of 12. The supermax is $234,936, per Her Hoop Stats. The maximum is $202,154 and the minimum for players with zero to two years of service is $62,285 and for three or more years is $74,305.
Who are the biggest free agents to watch?
Breanna Stewart is the top name to watch. The two-time champion signed a one-year deal with the Seattle Storm last offseason, setting up another buzzy free agency period this year. Stewart reportedly will meet with the Storm, Minnesota Lynx, Washington Mystics and New York Liberty during free agency. As of Sunday, she narrowed it down to the Storm and Liberty.
A handful of veterans are unrestricted free agents: Diana Taurasi and Brittney Griner (Phoenix); Candace Parker, Courtney Vandersloot, Allie Quigley and Emma Meesseman (Chicago); Nneka Ogwumike and Kristi Toliver (Los Angeles).
Tracking WNBA trades
The Los Angeles Sparks acquired Dearica Hamby from the Las Vegas Aces along with a 2024 first-round draft pick in exchange for exclusive negotiating rights to Amanda Zahui B. and 2024 second-round pick, the teams announced Saturday. Hamby later addressed the trade in an Instagram post, saying the Aces "discriminated" against her pregnancy and that she was lied to. The WNBPA said it will investigate the claims.
The Los Angeles Sparks acquired Jasmine Thomas and the 2023 WNBA Draft's No. 10 overall pick from the Connecticut Sun in exchange for Olivia Nelson-Ododa, Jasmine Walker and the reserved rights to Kianna Smith, the teams announced Monday.
The Sun also traded Jonquel Jones, a four-time All-Star and 2021 MVP, to the New York Liberty as part of a three-team deal that included the Dallas Wings. The Liberty also received Kayla Thornton from the Wings. The Sun received Rebecca Allen and the No. 6 overall draft pick from the Liberty and Tyasha Harris from the Wings. The Wings received Natasha Howard and Crystal Dangerfield from the Liberty.
The Atlanta Dream acquired Allisha Gray from the Dallas Wings in a deal that includes draft picks, the teams announced Saturday. The Dream also acquired Danielle Robinson from the Indiana Fever in exchange for Kristy Wallace, the teams announced Jan. 13.
Courtney Vandersloot leaving the Sky
Courtney Vandersloot announced on Instagram on Tuesday night that she won't return to the Chicago Sky next season.
Vandersloot has spent her entire career with the Sky, who initially selected her with the No. 3 overall pick in 2011. The four-time All-Star helped lead the Sky to a title in 2021, and averaged 11.8 points and 6.5 assists per game last season.
It's unclear where Vandersloot will end up next season. She's eligible to sign a new deal starting Feb. 1.