As one of two WNBA “superteams” created in a wild 2023 offseason, the reigning WNBA champion Las Vegas Aces got off to a fast start, handling business on the road against the Seattle Storm in a 41-point win, led by Kelsey Plum’s 23-point outing.
The Aces had a headline-filled offseason, trading former sixth player of the year Dearica Hamby to the Los Angeles Sparks, and adding Candace Parker, a decorated star who finished with 12 points, four rebounds and five assists in her Aces debut, via free agency.
Hamby alleged that she was bullied and manipulated for being pregnant by Aces head coach Becky Hammon in a post on Instagram shortly after the trade, leading to a WNBA investigation. It resulted in Hammon being suspended two games without pay for violating league and team respect in the workplace policies.
As Hammon serves her final game of suspension, the Sparks and Hamby host the Aces. Both teams enter the game after winning their season opener, with Los Angeles defeating the Phoenix Mercury by 23 points on Saturday.
Just like they were against the Storm, the Aces are double-digit favorites entering the game, but could Las Vegas be overvalued early in the season among oddsmakers?
Odds updated as of 8 a.m. on May 25.
Airing on CBSSN at 10 p.m. ET
Money line: Aces -1250; Sparks +710
The Aces are catching 13.5 points in this matchup, as these two teams will meet twice over the next three days. In four games last season, the Aces swept the series and covered the spread each time, according to OddsShark, but the largest line was 10.5-points in their first head-to-head matchup last May.
Two completely different rosters is something else to note, as well. The Sparks are led by Nneka and Chiney Ogwumike, who both scored in double figures in their season opener, 2023 first-round pick Zia Cooke from South Carolina, who scored 14 points in her debut, along with the aforementioned Hamby, who didn’t shoot well from the field (1-7) but added nine points.
Meanwhile, outside of Parker and Plum, the Aces have A’ja Wilson, who dominated with 13 points and 13 rebounds against the Storm, Chelsea Gray, who averaged nearly 14 points a game last season for Las Vegas, among others on a rock-solid roster that is favored to win it all again for the second straight season.
If anything, we could be in store for a high scoring game between the two teams, with the total set at 171.5. The Sparks scored 94 points in their season opener, while the Aces poured in 105 points.