Elsewhere around the league, star players are enjoying new lucrative contracts.
Courtney Williams ($190,550) is the highest-paid player for the Atlanta Dream for the second consecutive year; her joyfully compelling 2019 season with the Sun earned her a sparkling new max deal the following offseason.
Chicago’s highest-paid players happen to be married: Courtney Vandersloot ($200,000) and Allie Quigley ($194,000), cheekily known as the Vanderquigs, each signed new deals with the Sky earlier last year. In 2021, they’ll hit the floor with Chicago native Candace Parker, who stands as the third-highest earner on the team at $190,000—a curious pay cut for the new face of the franchise, and far less than what the future Hall of Famer truly deserves.
In Dallas, veteran Moriah Jefferson ($175,100) will be the top earner on a youthful Wings team set to be held down by its burgeoning superstars—Arike Ogunbowale ($58,710) and Satou Sabally ($69,360) will have to wait until at least 2023 for the substantial pay rises they deserve.
Free-agent signings Jantel Lavender ($175,000) and Danielle Robinson ($155,000) take over as the top earners for the new-look Indiana Fever, following the departure of their perennial all-star Candice Dupree.
The LA Sparks, who lost superstars Parker and Gray in the offseason, will pay Kristi Toliver and WNBPA President Nneka Ogwumike max salaries of $190,550 each this year.
Over in Minnesota, Kayla McBride and Aerial Powers—shocking Lynx acquisitions in a whirlwind period of free agency—will each receive max salaries of $190,550, out-earning new teammate and former MVP Sylvia Fowles ($117,894).
The perpetually rebuilding New York Liberty traded for the three-time champ and 2019 Defensive Player of the Year Natasha Howard, whom they will reward with $215,000 this year; the Libs also scored 2020 Wubble breakthrough star Betnijah Laney in free agency, and she, in turn, will take home a max salary of $190,550. In February 2020, Sue Bird told Howard Megdal, “money has really never been the motivator in the WNBA.” In equal parts, Bird enlightens the privilege of having a spot in such an incredibly competitive league and points out that the CBA’s new salary structure marks a historic turning point for the WNBA.