Las Vegas (May 5, 2021)—Las Vegas Aces Head Coach Bill Laimbeer announced today that the team is adding eight-year WNBA veteran, and member of the Aces 2020 WNBA Finals team, Sugar Rodgers to its coaching staff. She joins Laimbeer, second-year assistant Tanisha Wright, and first-year assistant Vanessa Nygaard on the bench.
“Sugar has a great deal of experience in our system having played for me for six years, and I expect her transition to coaching will be a smooth one” said Laimbeer. “As a franchise, we pride ourselves in investing in the player as a person, and helping them achieve their goals after their playing days are over. Being able to provide an opportunity for a former player is a win-win.”
Rodgers spent the last two years of her playing career with the Aces after Las Vegas acquired the long-distance sharp-shooter on April 11, 2019 from New York. During that time, the Georgetown grad helped the team to its first two postseason appearances since 2014, and its first WNBA Finals appearance since 2008.
“I’m excited to get started on the next part of my career, and I can’t think of a better place to do it than Las Vegas,” said Rodgers. “I’m obviously very familiar with Bill’s system as well as with many of the players on the team , and I’m grateful for the opportunity to be a part of what has been, and will continue to be, the best franchise in the WNBA.”
In 2019, Rodgers helped the Aces lead the WNBA in three-point shooting by connecting on 35.7 percent of her shots from long range. She saw action in 33 of 34 regular season games, averaging 3.4 points, 1.5 rebounds and 1.2 assists per game. In 2020, she averaged 3.4 points, 1.3 rebounds and 1.4 assists while playing in all 22 games.
Over her eight-year career, Rodgers connected on 34.6 percent of her three-pointers.
She was originally drafted by the Minnesota Lynx in the second round of the 2013 WNBA Draft. The New York Liberty, then helmed by current Aces Head Coach Bill Laimbeer, acquired Rodgers in a 2014 trade, where she remained for the next five years.
She 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. Rodgers 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.