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    wnba legend sue bird is set to retire after her 19th season in the league. which team did she play for her entire career?

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    WNBA legend Sue Bird says she will retire after this season : NPR

    Bird has played with the Seattle Storm since being drafted by the team in 2002. On Thursday, she announced that the current WNBA season, her 19th playing, will be her last.

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    The Seattle Storm's Sue Bird announces this season will be her last in the WNBA

    June 16, 20225:20 PM ET

    WYNNE DAVIS Instagram Twitter

    Sue Bird of the Seattle Storm has said the 2022 season will be her last in the WNBA. Her retirement comes in her 21st year with the basketball league and after many all-time records.

    Steph Chambers/Getty Images

    This WNBA season will be the final one for Sue Bird, the longtime Seattle Storm star announced on Thursday.

    "I've decided this will be my final year," Bird said in a post shared on her Instagram and Twitter accounts. "I have loved every single minute, and still do, so gonna play my last year just like this little girl played her first."

    Bird played college basketball at the University of Connecticut and was the No. 1 overall draft pick in 2002. She signed with the Seattle Storm and has spent the entirety of her career with the team, racking up four WNBA championships, in 2004, 2010, 2018 and 2020.

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    Bird is in her 21st year with the Seattle Storm, and this year will be her 19th season playing with the team. She took off two seasons due to injuries but still holds the record for the most seasons played for a single player in the entire league.

    By numbers alone, Bird's impact on the WNBA is monumental. She holds the record for all-time assists in the league, with a whopping 3,114 during her career. She has started in 559 games and is the only player to have played in more than 500 games. But it doesn't stop there.

    Diana Taurasi (left) and Sue Bird of the U.S. women's basketball team pose with their gold medals during the Tokyo Olympic Games in 2021. The two are tied for the most gold medals in Olympic basketball, for both the women's and men's competitions.

    Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

    Outside the WNBA, Bird has won five consecutive Olympic gold medals for the U.S. women's basketball team. She is tied with her friend and national teammate Diana Taurasi as the leader for the most Olympic gold medals in basketball history — both women's and men's.

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    Bird has also put in work off the court. In 2021, she teamed up with soccer player Alex Morgan, swimmer Simone Manuel and snowboarder Chloe Kim to create and launch TOGETHXR, a media company geared toward women that's focused on the intersections of lifestyle, culture and sports.

    She has been an outspoken supporter of other women in sports, including fellow WNBA star Brittney Griner, who has been held in Russia since being detained there in February.

    Bird is also an advocate for LGBTQ+ youth. Together with soccer star Megan Rapinoe, to whom Bird has been engaged since 2020, Bird launched the "Love Is" campaign and fashion brand to raise awareness and support for LGBTQ+ youth of color, especially those in the trans community.

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    WNBA legend Sue Bird to retire after season

    Sue Bird has won five Olympic gold medals and four WNBA championships during her career.

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    WNBA legend Sue Bird to retire after season

    Sue Bird, the WNBA's all-time assists leader with 3,114, will retire at the end of the 2022 season. | USA TODAY /VIA REUTERS

    AFP-JIJI SHARE Jun 17, 2022

    WNBA legend Sue Bird said Thursday she will retire from basketball at the end of the 2022 season, signing off after a career that included five Olympic gold medals and four WNBA championships.

    “I’ve decided this will be my final year,” Bird posted on social media.

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    WNBA, SEATTLE STORM, SUE BIRD

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    WNBA legend Sue Bird announces current season will be her last

    Seattle Storm star and five-time Olympic gold medallist Sue Bird announced Thursday the 2022 season will be her last playing in the WNBA.

    Basketball

    WNBA legend Sue Bird announces current season will be her last

    Seattle Storm star and five-time Olympic gold medallist Sue Bird announced Thursday the 2022 season will be her last playing in the WNBA.

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    41-year-old spent entire career with Seattle, winning 4 titles and 5 gold medals

    Tim Booth · The Associated Press · Posted: Jun 16, 2022 12:25 PM ET | Last Updated: June 16

    Seattle Storm guard Sue Bird announced on Thursday that she will retire following the current WNBA season. (Steph Chambers/Getty Images)

    Seattle Storm star and five-time Olympic gold medallist Sue Bird announced Thursday the 2022 season will be her last playing in the WNBA.

    The announcement by Bird, 41, ended any speculation about her future; she had acknowledged in February when she re-signed with Seattle that this would likely be her final season. She strongly considered retirement after last season before choosing to return for a 19th season as a player.

    Bird's announcement came a day before Seattle's game at Connecticut. The Storm will close out their road trip on Sunday in New York, about 30 miles from where Bird grew up in Syosset, N.Y.

    "As the season has gone, like I said, I pretty much knew, and then once I saw the schedule, and then once I started packing for this trip a little bit, I was like, `Oh, this is gonna be my last time playing in New York. My last time playing in front of my family and friends.' And so that's why the timing of this is what it is," Bird said in a video posted by the Storm on social media.

    "I just really felt strongly about announcing my retirement, saying it was my last year so I can share that with my family and my friends, all the people in New York who have watched me growing up so they can come and see me play for the last time in my home state. So I'm excited about that. It's also bittersweet."

    Bird is a four-time WNBA champion, 12-time all-star and the oldest player in the league. She has spent her entire WNBA career with Seattle since becoming the No. 1 draft pick in 2002 following her storied college career at UConn. This season is her 21st associated with the franchise although just her 19th playing after missing two seasons because of injuries.

    Her resume is the envy of anyone in professional sports, let alone basketball. National championships at UConn in 2000 and 2002. WNBA titles with Seattle in 2004, 2008, 2018 and 2020, the last coming inside the WNBA "bubble" in Florida amid the coronavirus pandemic.

    Bird hoisted five additional titles playing overseas in the EuroLeague. Last year, she added a fifth Olympic gold in Tokyo to go along with the ones the United States earned in 2004 in Athens, 2008 in Beijing, 2012 in London and 2016 in Rio de Janeiro.

    Bird was the AP national player of the year her final season at UConn. She is a five-time all-WNBA first-team selection, the league's all-time leader in assists and the only player to appear in more than 500 games in league history.

    She has been honoured on every list imaginable as one of best and most influential players in the history of the league. And she's the standard by which other point guards are judged.

    Bird turns 42 in October and was on the cusp of stepping away a year ago, and when the Storm were eliminated by the Phoenix Mercury in the playoffs, fans chanted "One more year! One more year!" as she did an on-court televised interview.

    Those cheers were egged on by Phoenix's longtime star Diana Taurasi, Bird's former college teammate at UConn and part of all five of those Olympic gold-medal runs.

    In the end, the fans — and Taurasi — got what they wanted. Bird came back, for exactly one more year.

    "Sue Bird is Storm basketball," her WNBA team tweeted moments after Bird made her decision known. "Every moment, every memory has one constant. No. 10. It's time for the final chapter."

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