Sue Bird thanks Seattle Storm fans in emotional farewell – JWS




Sue Bird’s 21-year WNBA career ended Tuesday when the Seattle Storm fell 97-92 to the Las Vegas Aces to end their season in the semifinals.

The 41-year-old guard was honored by both Storm and Aces players on the pitch as fans shouted their thanks.

She finishes her career as the WNBA’s all-time assist leader and all-time playoff assist leader. In the 2022 postseason, she added 46 assists to her total and committed just six turnovers through six games. She finished with eight points and eight assists in her final game Tuesday night.

“Obviously so grateful for 20 years here. I’m going to miss it so much. I’m not going anywhere, but I’m going to miss it,” Bird told ESPN’s Holly Rowe on the court after the game.

“I’m so proud of this team this year. I’m so proud to be a member of the Seattle Storm,” she continued. “It’s been an honor to play for this franchise, to play for these fans.”

The crowd in Seattle reflected that same love and admiration back to Bird, who spent her entire career with the franchise and won four WNBA titles with the Storm. The same fans who called for “One more year!” after the team’s final game of 2021, this time sent her off with shouts of “Thanks, Sue!”

When asked about her legacy, Bird said she hopes the Storm can continue to win and play at the high level they established during her run.

“I just hope that the next person that comes in and plays point guard here can just keep the tradition going, keep winning, keep that championship level going, keep these fans happy,” she said. “I hope I made everyone in here proud.”

Bird left the field with his teammates before changing course. She remained on the field and received hugs from all members of the Aces’ team and coaching staff. The crowd remained on their feet as Bird acknowledged them before finally heading to the locker room.

“I didn’t really want to leave the court,” Bird said. “It felt like that’s where everyone was going, so I just followed along at first. But I also wanted one last moment to say thank you, to soak it all in, because in some ways it’s a happy thing.

“I’m proud of everything we’ve achieved here. Of course I’m sad, but there’s also happiness, to be able to have a moment like that with the fans, to have them sing like they did. I know, that the tears don’t look like happy tears, but there is a lot of happiness.”

Bird admitted it “feels a little weird” knowing she was playing her last WNBA game. Meanwhile, her teammates, including Breanna Stewart, are still coming to terms with the idea of ​​no longer playing with Bird.

“As sad as it is that we don’t have the ability to compete for a championship,” Stewart said, “I think what’s more devastating is the fact that we will no longer be on the field with Sue. We’re not going to see her in practice, we’re not going to play with her in games. I think that’s what hurts the most — that it’s going to be really, really fast.”

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