LAS VEGAS (April 11, 2019)—Las Vegas Aces General Manager Dan Padover announced today that the team has acquired six-year guard Sugar Rodgers from the New York Liberty.
In order to bring the 2017 All-Star to the Entertainment Capital of the World, the Aces first dealt second-year forward Nia Coffey to Atlanta in exchange for the Dream’s second round pick in the 2020 WNBA Draft. They then traded that second round pick to New York in exchange for Rodgers.
In acquiring Rodgers, the Aces improve their front court depth by adding a long-range shooter who has connected on 34.8 percent of her three-pointers in her career, including 36.6 percent over the last three seasons.
“We are excited about the addition of Sugar Rodgers to the Aces organization,” said Padover. “We were looking to add another veteran this offseason who can help this young core move forward, and Sugar fits that mold to a T.
“Her ability to shoot from long distance will allow us to spread the floor, and she is a very sound defensive player. She is also familiar with our system, has a high basketball IQ, and will be a great teammate on and off the court.
“We had to give up a quality person and a quality player in order to acquire Sugar,” he added, “and we want to thank Nia Coffey for her two years with this franchise. Las Vegas basketball fans will always hold Nia in high regard as one of the original Aces, and we wish her nothing but the best.”
Although the Aces ranked seventh in the league in three-point field goal percentage a year ago, they were last in three-point field goal attempts, averaging fewer attempts than any team in the league since the 2013 Los Angeles Sparks.
Rodgers was originally drafted by the Minnesota Lynx in the second round of the 2012 WNBA Draft. The New York Liberty, then helmed by current Aces Head Coach Bill Laimbeer, acquired Rodgers in a 2013 trade, where she remained for the next five years.
The Georgetown grad enjoyed her best season in 2016 when she averaged 14.5 points, 3.7 rebounds and 2.4 assist, while connecting on 41.3 percent of her shots from beyond the arc. New York won its second of three-straight Eastern Conference regular season titles that year. She followed that up with an All-Star-worthy campaign in 2017, averaging 10.5 points, a career-high 3.8 rebounds, and 2.3 assists.
Rodgers brings career averages of 8.0 points, 2.8 rebounds and 1.7 assists to the Aces, along with an 82.0 percent free throw percentage.
Coffey was originally drafted by the San Antonio Stars with the fifth overall pick in the 2017 WNBA Draft. She began her sophomore season in the league by scoring in double figures in four of five games, but an injury at Chicago on June 3, kept her out of the next four contests. She returned to the lineup on June 15, but never quite regained her early season form.