One year after leaving the Minnesota Lynx to play for the Los Angeles Sparks, WNBA legend Seimone Augustus has announced her retirement. While she’s done playing basketball, she isn’t leaving the league completely, and will serve as an assistant coach for the Sparks.
“It’s an honor to continue to serve the game that has given me so much,” Augustus said in a statement. “I’m excited to join the Sparks staff and look forward to developing in this new role.”
She joins General Manager/Head Coach Derek Fisher, and assistant coaches Latricia Trammell and Fred Williams.
“Seimone Augustus is one of the greatest basketball players to ever step foot on a court,” Fisher said. “Her impact as a pioneer in our sport can be seen through all the players and people she’s impacted in this game. It’s been an amazing honor to work with her over the past year and we’re excited to add all of her wisdom to our coaching staff.”
Augustus is one of the stars who made the WNBA into what it is today. After being drafted first overall by the Minnesota Lynx in 2006, Augustus became one of best forwards in the league. She was an eight-time all-star and made the All-WNBA team six times. She also led the Lynx to four championships, in 2011, 2013, 2015, and 2017. She was named the Finals MVP in 2011.
She retires from the WNBA as the 10th best scorer in league history with 6,005 points, averaging 15.4 for her career. Her career 44 percent shooting percentage is also seventh best in WNBA history.
Originally from Baton Rouge, La., Augustus played college ball at Louisiana State University, where she won back-to-back Wooden and Naismith Player of the Year awards and appeared in the Final Four three consecutive years.
Augustus got engaged to LaTaya Varner in 2010, and the two got married in 2015. As of October 2018, the couple is no longer together.
While lesbian players have made important contributions to the league since its inception, the league has few women head coaches and even fewer queer ones. Currently, Minnesota Lynx Head Coach Cheryl Reeve is the only out lesbian head coach in the league, and out gay man Curt Miller coaches the Connecticut Sun.