Sue Bird, a WNBA superstar, announced her intention to finish at the end of the 2022 season

Sue Bird, a WNBA superstar, announced her intention to finish at the end of the 2022 season

Sue Bird announced her retirement from the WNBA at the end of the 2022 season on Thursday.

Her professional career began in 2002, when the Seattle Storm drafted her first overall out of UConn. The Storm will have spent her whole 21-year career alongside the renowned point guard.

“I’ve decided that this will be my final year,” Bird said on Twitter. “I’ve loved every minute of it, and I still do, so I’m going to play my last year like this little child did her first.”

After leading the Huskies to two NCAA championships in 2000 and 2002, she went on to become one of the most iconic players in the WNBA. In 2020, Bird became only the third player in WNBA or NBA history to win championship titles in three different decades (2004, 2010, 2018 and 2020).

Last year, Bird picked up her fifth Olympic medal at the Tokyo 2020 Games after helping lift Team USA to its seventh straight title. She is retiring with a total of 10 Olympic and World Cup medals, nine of which are gold. That is more medals than any other basketball player — man or woman — has ever earned.

Her name is already in the history books for multiple reasons. Bird is a 12-time All-Star, which is the most All-Star Games for any WNBA player in league history. She is retiring as the WNBA’s all-time assist leader. Bird registered her 3,000th career assist on July 9, 2021. She currently has a total of 3,114 assists, which is 514 more than any other player. Her stats show how well-rounded her game is, as Bird also ranks second in career 3-pointers made with 965, fourth in steals with 700, and seventh in points with 6,639.

Bird, now 41 years old, had already previously considered retirement, but announced in January that she wanted to return for one more season. She went on to sign a one-year contract with the Storm.

 

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