Every Las Vegas Aces player receives $100,000 sponsorship from city

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The Las Vegas Aces’ week started with players receiving a championship ring and the team hanging a title banner for the second consecutive home opener. The week only got sweeter come Friday, when each player was gifted a $100,000 sponsorship by the city of Las Vegas.

The announcement was made to the team by Steve Hill and leaders from the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority (LVCVA). Hill is president and CEO of the agency and also chairman of the Las Vegas Stadium Authority.

“Today we want to do something that is new, something that I don’t think anyone has done before. We want to recognize you individually, we want to put some money in your pockets,” Hill told the players in the locker room, to which they all joyously laughed.

“The offer is really simple: We want you to just play, keep repping Las Vegas and if you get a three-peat, that would be icing on the cake.”

According to data from Spotrac, six Aces players are currently playing on contracts worth less than $100,000: Megan Gustafson, Emma Cannon, Sydney Colson, Kierstan Bell, Dyaisha Fair and Kate Martin.

Below are the 2024 salaries for the team’s championship core.

The Aces have been able to re-sign their star players at below-market contracts, even as the new CBA raised the individual player maximum.

Gray signed in Las Vegas as an unrestricted free agent for her max value in 2021, but ever since, Gray, Young, Plum and Wilson have signed for substantially lower than their allowable super-max. In 2024, each of the core four is making at least $40,000 less than their max, a huge amount of cost savings when the salary cap is $1.43 million.

The three highest-paid players in the WNBA in 2024 are Arike Ogunbowale of the Dallas Wings, Jewell Loyd of the Seattle Storm and Kahleah Copper of the Phoenix Mercury, each making $241,984.

The mean salary in the league this season is just south of $120,000 and the median is below $90,000, per data from Her Hoop Stats. An extra $100,000 in the pocket of every Ace is doubling the average salary, and adding an extra fifty percent for the top players, making it easier to extend at a discount.

That is a powerful free-agent recruiting tool for a Las Vegas team that already has several advantages in its favor, including a dedicated practice facility, the highest per-game attendance in the WNBA and a winning tradition.

In accordance with the collective bargaining agreement, this sponsorship is independent of the Aces organization.

The franchise itself cannot arrange for additional compensation or endorsements on behalf of its players — recall that the Aces were docked their 2025 first-round draft pick for promising impermissible benefits to Dearica Hamby when she was signing an extension with the team in 2022.

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(Photo: David Becker / NBAE via Getty Images)

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