Updated June 14, 2021 - 7:07 pm
The WNBA All-Star Game is returning to Las Vegas this summer.
The league announced Monday it will play its annual All-Star Game on July 14 at Michelob Ultra Arena.
The game coincides with the Olympic break, and a team comprised of WNBA All-Stars will play a team from the USA national team, which will be training in Las Vegas for the Summer Olympics in Tokyo.
Las Vegas also hosted the All-Star Game in 2019. There was no All-Star Game last season because of the coronavirus pandemic.
Aces coach Bill Laimbeer referred to the game as “more of a league and MGM (Resorts International) situation,” indicating that the franchise won’t bear the responsibility of hosting the game the way it did in 2019. The coaches of the teams with the two best records traditionally coach the All-Star Game.
Laimbeer was one of the coaches in 2019, and the Aces at 8-3 are tied for the league’s second-best record.
“The All-Star game is a fine event. I don’t know how they’re going to do it,” Laimbeer said. “My plan is to go on vacation.”
Laimbeer also indicated that attendance restrictions for Aces’ home games are going to be lifted soon, though there is no specific timetable for any changes, according to a person with knowledge of the situation. Season ticket holders have been allowed to attend home games in a socially distanced setting, and clusters of fans are spaced several feet apart throughout the arena.
About 2,000 fans have attended each of the five home games.
“Hopefully we can continue to get more in the building,” Aces guard Kelsey Plum said Sunday after an 85-78 victory over the Dallas Wings.
Tickets for the All-Star game go on sale Friday, per Mandalay Bay, and All-Star voting begins Tuesday. Fans, active WNBA players and a panel of national media will select the All-Stars, with the fans accounting for 50 percent of the vote and the players and media accounting for 25 percent apiece.
Who: New York Liberty at Aces
When: 7 p.m. Tuesday
Where: Michelob Ultra Arena
About the Aces (8-3): Las Vegas has won six of its past seven and claimed a 94-82 victory over New York on June 3, with A’ja Wilson getting 30 points, 13 rebounds and five assists. She was equally as good Sunday against the Dallas Wings, posting 28 points and 14 rebounds. Wilson is averaging 19.5 points and 8.5 rebounds while shooting a career-high 49.3 percent from the field and 94.2 percent from the free-throw line.
About the Liberty (6-4): Betnijah Laney led New York with 23 points in its loss to the Aces. She’s among the WNBA’s best perimeter scorers, averaging a career-high 21 points on 48.7 percent shooting to go with 5.4 assists. Former No. 1 overall pick Sabrina Ionescu is considered day to day with an ankle injury. The point guard is averaging 13.7 points, 6.4 rebounds and 7.1 assists, but scored five points against the Aces on 2-of-13 shooting.