Courtney Vandersloot will return to Sky on one-year deal
Vandersloot averaged 10.5 points, 8.6 assists and 3.5 rebounds in 32 games for the Sky last season. She led the league in assists for the fifth straight year.
Sky point guard Courtney Vandersloot has agreed to terms on a one-year deal to return to Chicago, a league source confirmed to the Sun-Times.
Sky coach/general manager James Wade has been vocal about the need to re-sign Vandersloot and Allie Quigley. Now that Vandersloot’s return is solidified, the Sky’s pursuit of back-to-back titles has come further into focus.
Vandersloot averaged 10.5 points, 8.6 assists and 3.5 rebounds in 32 games for the Sky last season. She led the league in assists for the fifth straight year and matched her single-game assist record of 18 in Game 1 of the semifinals against the Connecticut Sun.
That night, she also became the second WNBA player to record a triple-double in the playoffs when she put up 12 points and 10 rebounds. Sheryl Swoopes was the first when she recorded 14 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists in the 2005 playoffs with the Houston Comets.
In 2021, Vandersloot moved into fourth on the WNBA’s all-time assist leaderboard with 2,178, behind Sue Bird, Ticha Penicheiro and Lindsay Whalen.
Selected third overall in the 2011 WNBA Draft by the Sky, Vandersloot came into the league humble and eager to learn. There were moments in her first couple of seasons under coach Pokey Chatman that she didn’t think she could cut it. This year, Vandersloot was one of the most sought-after free agents.
In her 11 seasons with the Sky, Vandersloot is a three-time All-Star, averaging 10.1 points, 6.7 assists and 3.1 rebounds.
The Sky lost two players from the 2021 championship team to free agency, Stefanie Dolson and Diamond Deshields.
Dolson, an unrestricted free agent, signed a multiyear deal with the New York Liberty, and Deshields was dealt to the Phoenix Mercury in a three-way trade that landed the Sky point guard Julie Allemand and a 2023 first-round draft pick from Phoenix.
The Sky agreed to terms with 2019 WNBA Finals MVP Emma Meesseman last week, filling the hole left by Dolson. She’s expected to sign with the Sky next week, along with 2021 Finals MVP Kahleah Copper, who will sign a multiyear deal.
Quigley is the one player among Wade’s 2021 starting five who remains unaccounted for.
“Assume it,” Wade said when asked in a November interview if it’s a safe assumption that Quigley will be back with the Sky in 2022. “As long as I’m coaching, I’m going to do everything to have [Vandersloot and Quigley] in Sky jerseys.”