Dearica Hamby traded to Los Angeles Sparks

The Las Vegas Aces are trading forward Dearica Hamby and their 2024 first round pick to the Los Angeles Sparks for the Aces’ 2024 second round pick and the exclusive negotiating rights to center Amanda Zahui B.

Hamby, 29, was drafted sixth overall by the San Antonio Stars in the 2015 draft. She then signed with the Aces in 2019 as a free agent. In 2022, the veteran forward averaged 9.3 points, 7.1 rebounds, 1.1 assists, and 1.1 steals on 46.6 percent shooting in 26.5 minutes per game. She won the championship in 2022 and won the Sixth Woman of the Year award in 2019 and 2020. For her career, Hamby is averaging 9.2 points, 5.6 rebounds, 1.4 assists, and 0.9 steals on 47.6 percent shooting in 22.3 minutes per game.

At the Aces’ championship parade, Hamby announced that she was pregnant with her second child, later adding that she was due in March 2023 and plans to be ready to go for the start of the 2023 season (although she noted that there are no guarantees, as Amaya was a difficult pregnancy). 

Midway through the 2022 season, Hamby signed a two-year extension with Las Vegas, at $169,000 a year for two more seasons, per Khristina Williams of Girls Talk Sports TV. Since then, however, the relationship has soured. In recent weeks, Hamby has taken to Twitter to express her frustration with the franchise, an ominous forecasting of the split to come. 

The Aces are looking to become the first team to win back-to-back WNBA titles since the Sparks in 2001-2002, and they’re looking for a starter that can log heavy minutes to fill Hamby’s role. Zahui B., 29, was drafted second overall by the Tulsa Shock in the 2015 draft. In 2016, she was traded to the New York Liberty, and then signed with the Sparks in 2021 as a free agent. She sat out the 2022 season after Los Angeles suspended her contract for the season. She won the Community Assist Award in 2021. For her career, Zahui B. is averaging 6.2 points, 4.0 rebounds, 0.7 assists, and 0.5 steals on 42.8 percent shooting in 15.7 minutes per game.

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