December 8, 2023

Between the regular season and the playoffs, Sue Bird has suited up 651 times for the Seattle Storm during her storied 19-year career. On Sunday afternoon, during the team’s 89-81 loss to the Las Vegas Aces, he took the court for one final regular-season game in Seattle. Byrd finished with nine points, four rebounds and six assists.

“Right now I just want to say, from the bottom of my heart, how grateful I am,” Bird said while addressing the crowd after the game. “Not just for today, and all of you who show up and support us, but for 21 years… This place isn’t just where I played, it’s where I call home.”

Before the game, the Storm honored Bird with a moving ceremony in front of a sold-out crowd that was the largest in franchise history and the largest ever to attend a basketball game at Seattle’s Climate Pledge Arena.

Bird also received a custom ring to commemorate her many accomplishments, which include, but are not limited to, four WNBA titles, a record 13 All-Star appearances and being the league’s all-time assists leader.

Earlier in the day, Seattle Mayor Bruce Harrell also declared that Sunday would be “Sue Bird Day” in honor of her contributions to the city over the past two decades. The statement was read in part:

While she is one of the most decorated female basketball players of all time, she was named a WNBA All-Star a record 13 times, earned All-WNBA recognition eight times, won Olympic gold five times, World Cup gold medals four times and two NCAA Championships; and

Whereas she has been an outspoken voice for change, using her position of influence to advocate for social change initiatives, including LGBTQ+ rights and racial equality here in Seattle and across the country; and

While the City of Seattle recognizes the significant contributions Suzanne Brigit Bird has made not only to our city but to the greater community and wishes her well in her retirement.

Now therefore, I, Bruce Harrell, Mayor of Seattle, do hereby proclaim August 7, 2022 as Sue Bird Day.

While the Storm have already clinched a playoff spot, the WNBA’s new format means there’s a chance this could be not only the final regular-season game in Seattle, but also the last home game, period. The Storm are currently in a tight battle with the Washington Mystics for the No. 4 seed and home field advantage in the first round.

Under the new format, the first round will be a best-of-three series with the higher-seeded team hosting Games 1 and 2. If the Storm end up as the No. 5 seed, then there is a future where both the two games in Washington and is eliminated from the playoffs without getting a home game. That’s unlikely, of course, but the possibility made Sunday’s game all the more meaningful for Bird and the Storm fans.

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