’23 WNBA slate tips May 19, features record 40 games per team

The 2023 WNBA regular season runs from May 19 to September 10 and features a record 40 games per team, the league announced Wednesday.

The opening weekend features four games on the first night of action, a Friday: the Washington Mystics will host the New York Liberty, the Connecticut Sun will travel to face the Indiana Fever, the Minnesota Lynx will meet the 2021 champions Chicago Sky in Minneapolis and The Phoenix Mercury will play the Los Angeles Sparks on the street.

The defending WNBA champion Las Vegas Aces will begin their season on Saturday, May 20 against the Seattle Storm in Seattle, a repeat of this fall’s dramatic semifinal series, while the Atlanta Dream and Dallas Wings also meet tonight in Dallas will compete. The first game weekend concludes on Sunday with the Sun welcoming the Mystics, Fever traveling to New York and Heaven playing Mercury in Phoenix.

The league will host its 19th All-Star Game on July 15 at a location to be announced. The 2023 campaign will also feature the third year of the Commissioner’s Cup, a mid-season competition running from May 19th to July 12th. The championship game will be played on August 15th.

Among other intriguing matchups: The Aces and Sun, who faced each other in the 2022 finals, will play three times beginning on June 6th and 8th in Connecticut.

The tally of 40 regular-season games per team — 20 away, 20 home — is four more than 2022 and eight more than 2021. The league will announce its television and streaming schedule at a later date.

Five teams have new coaches on the way: The Sun (Stephanie White replaces Curt Miller); the Wings (Latricia Trammell replacing Vickie Johnson); the Fever (Christie Sides replacing Marianne Stanley/Carlos Knox); the Mystics (Eric Thibault replacing Mike Thibault); and the Sparks (Miller replacing Derek Fisher/Fred Williams).

One of the most anticipated free agency periods in league history is set to begin early next year, with free agent negotiations beginning January 21 and signings allowed on February 1.

The 2023 WNBA draft, in which the Fever is #1 overall, is scheduled for April 10, 2023.