Surprises and Superteams — Ranking the Top WNBA Free Agency Signings

Entering free agency, several star players were set to embark on the open market. The possibility  of players like Breanna Stewart, Candace Parker, and Courtney Vandersloot changing locations ahead of the 2023 campaign sent teams and fans alike into feverish excitement. GMs and coaches pounced on this opportunity, with so much top to bottom talent available to improve their teams.  

Although superstar free agents like Phoenix’s Diana Taurasi and Brittney Griner, and Los Angeles’ Nneka Ogwumike decided to re-sign after exploring the open market, many noteworthy players found new homes. Whether it’s new superteams in New York and Las Vegas, or other significant signings around the league, free agency this offseason has been a frenetic adventure. Let’s go along for the WNBA’s wild ride and rank the top free-agent signings thus far. 


10. Isabelle Harrison – Chicago Sky 

In an offseason seemingly filled with players departing Chicago, the Sky immediately added a solid contributor when Harrison signed a two-year deal with the Sky. After spending the last four years with the Dallas Wings, the 29-year-old forward will now play alongside stars Kahleah Copper and Marina Mabrey

After a career-best sophomore year in 2017 with the San Antonio Stars, averaging 11.4 points and 6.4 rebounds, Harrison was traded to Dallas, where she shifted between starting and bench roles. Averaging nearly double figures in scoring over four seasons with the Wings, Harrison has high offensive potential and the ability to distribute well, while also crashing the boards in the paint.

In Chicago, Harrison will join a suddenly guard- and wing-heavy Sky team, with Copper and Mabrey leading that charge. In her seventh WNBA season, Harrison will likely see expanded playing time, serving as a nice counter on this new-look roster. 


9. Courtney Williams – Chicago Sky

On the same day Harrison committed to join the Sky, Williams did the same, signing a one-year contract to head to the Windy City. Williams, 29, was one of the more intriguing veteran guard options available this offseason, coming off her seventh season in the W. 

Williams has been a solid floor general throughout her career, holding career averages of 12.5 points, 5.3 rebounds, and three assists over 209 games. A season ago with the Connecticut Sun, Williams once again showcased her dominance in the mid-range game, shooting 42.6 percent from the field and 33.8 percent from three, as well as averaging 11.1 points, 4.6 rebounds, 3.3 assists, and one steal in 34 contests. 

Often a fan favorite wherever she plays, Williams will jump into a starting role once again with Chicago, the fourth team she has suited up for in her career. Her ability to facilitate offensively and as a distributor will be useful on a Sky team looking to replace multiple key players from a year ago now absent. And, if nothing else, Williams’ energy will be highly entertaining as always. 


8. Brittney Sykes – Washington Mystics 

Even before players could officially sign this offseason, Sykes knew who she intended to sign with when she agreed to join the Washington Mystics on a three-year contract. One of the top defensive players on the market, Sykes will be a useful piece in the nation’s capital on a team that already had the best defensive rating and allowed the fewest points to opponents in 2022.

Sykes comes to the Mystics after spending the last three years with the Los Angeles Sparks. The 28-year-old has taken her game up a notch defensively, claiming All-Defensive honors the last three years while leading the league in steals in 2021 and 2022. Last summer, the guard also averaged career-highs of 12.7 points, 3.7 assists, and two steals in 32 appearances.

Sykes was one of the more impactful early signings of free agency; we thought the Mystics were strong defensively in 2022, but they might be even tougher to face this summer. 


7. Alysha Clark – Las Vegas Aces 

A day after the Aces made one of the early splashes in free agency by signing Candace Parker away from Chicago, the rich got richer in Vegas, with veteran forward Clark agreeing to join the superteam roster

The 35-year-old, who will play in her 11th WNBA season, will play a key role in providing Las Vegas with depth crucial for a championship-caliber team. Last season, her first and only with the Mystics, Clark averaged eight points, 4.5 rebounds, and two assists over 29 starts and 34 games. That production, even to a limited extent, will be valuable for the Aces.

Throughout her career, Clark has been a dominant two-way player, earning multiple All-Defensive Team honors and entering this season second in league history in two-point field goal percentage and effective field goal percentage. She was part of two championship teams with the Seattle Storm, and she joins a roster in Vegas who knows what it takes to win it all.


6. Ezi Magbegor – Seattle Storm 

Since jumping into the WNBA in 2020, Magbegor has improved every season, growing from a limited bench role her rookie season to a starter in 2022. That trajectory made the promising 23-year-old center an intriguing free agent this offseason; ultimately, she elected to re-sign with the Storm

A season ago, Magbegor averaged career-highs in points (9.5), rebounds (5.6), blocks (1.8), and assists (1.4) over 33 games and a career-best 23 starts. With Tina Charles likely heading elsewhere this offseason, Magbegor should solidify the starting center spot, looking to improve on her stellar 2022 numbers. During an offseason that saw the Storm lose both Breanna Stewart and Sue Bird, Magbegor’s re-signing is key to the team’s continued success this season. 


5. Azurá Stevens – Los Angeles Sparks

After wrapping up her third season with the Sky and fifth in the WNBA, Stevens found herself one of the most sought-after free agents this offseason. With multiple suitors looking to sign Stevens, the 26-year-old made the decision to sign with the new-look Sparks.

Stevens has made steady progress throughout her career, mainly coming off the bench in Chicago over her three-year tenure. On the second unit, Stevens tallied 10.6 points, 3.9 rebounds, and 1.1 blocks over 35 regular season games. Across her career, she has averaged nine points, 4.4 rebounds, 1.1 blocks, and one steal over 121 contests. 

With a fresh start coming in Los Angeles, the versatile two-way talent will fit in well with the Sparks. While joining Nneka and Chiney Ogwumike in the frontcourt of new head coach Curt Miller’s system, Stevens should help the Sparks rotation, showcasing her capability to stretch the floor and dominate on the defensive end. 


4. Brionna Jones – Connecticut Sun

One of the biggest names on the free agent market this offseason was Sun stalwart Brionna Jones, and it didn’t take long to find out where she would end up, as the Sun decided to apply the Core designation on the star center

Jones, a talented two-way player who has nightly double-double capabilities, is one of the top players in the league at her position and could be due for an even bigger season in 2023. Coming off earning Sixth Player of the Year honors in 2022 and Most Improved Player honors in 2021, Jones will step into an expanded role following the trade of Jonquel Jones to New York.

It’s easy to see why Connecticut wanted to bring Breezy back this season, and the Core designation buys the team time to work out a potential long-term deal. Having averaged 14.3 points, 6.2 rebounds, 1.6 assists, and 1.3 steals over the last two seasons, Jones will be a centerpiece for the Sun while trying to claim her third All-Star selection. 


3. Courtney Vandersloot – New York Liberty 

Shortly after Breanna Stewart rocked the W and signed with the New York Liberty as a free agent, Vandersloot joined her, helping build a formidable superteam in New York. After 12 seasons with the Sky, the veteran point guard will have a prime opportunity to add a second WNBA title to her resume. 

Vandersloot, 34, was one of the best shooters and distributors on the free agency market—perhaps the best in the history of the game—and will provide the Liberty with a versatile sharp-shooting guard alongside Sabrina Ionescu, Jonquel Jones, and Stewart.

One of the top players available this offseason, Vandersloot averaged 11.8 points, 6.5 assists, 3.9 rebounds, and 1.2 steals in 32 games in 2022. This summer, she will play a key role in helping the Liberty make a run at their first title. 


2. Candace Parker – Las Vegas Aces 

Before New York’s superteam was fully assembled, Las Vegas kicked off the offseason by signing two-time MVP and WNBA champion Parker, who decided to leave her hometown Sky to head west.

Perhaps the top free agent available this offseason outside of Steward and Vandersloot, Parker still has plenty left in the tank at the age of 36, coming off a season where she averaged 13.2 points, 8.6 rebounds, 4.5 assists, 1.0 steal, and 1.0 block over 32 regular season games with the Sky. 

In 2023, Parker will play a large role on a team that was already one of the favorites to repeat as champions—adding Parker will only strengthen Vegas’ chances this summer. 


1. Breanna Stewart – New York Liberty

The top free agent available made the offseason an entertaining one, full of hilarious and cryptic emoji tweets keeping us all guessing. In the end, Stewie decided it was time to move on from the Storm when she signed with her hometown team in the Big Apple

The Liberty were already title contenders before Stewart joined the squad, with Ionescu and the newly-added Jones and Sloot. In Stewart, New York gains the 2022 MVP runner-up, giving the rest of the WNBA a run for its money in 2023 and beyond. 

At 28, Stewie has continued her dominance while establishing herself as one of the top players—if not the top player—in the league. Last season, she averaged a career-high-tying 21.8 points, along with 7.6 rebounds, 2.9 assists, and 1.6 steals over 34 games. Now, surrounded by a handful of stars on a New York superteam, Stewart and the Liberty will be title favorites. 

This WNBA offseason has already been one of most entertaining ever, with each big-name free agent potentially changing the landscape. If the energy of the upcoming season is anything like this, we are in for a serious treat this summer. 


All stats as of 3/8/23. Unless otherwise noted, all stats courtesy of WNBA Stats.

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