Posted on: August 31, 2023, 12:42h.
Last updated on: August 30, 2023, 03:04h.
Vice President Kamala Harris didn’t hold back in praising the Las Vegas Aces, the defending WNBA champions, during the team’s recent visit to the White House.
The Aces won the 2022 WNBA Finals last September with a 3-1 series win over the Connecticut Sun. Both teams have strong ties to the US gaming industry.
The Aces were owned by MGM Resorts when the team was relocated from San Antonio to Southern Nevada in 2017. MGM sold the WNBA team to Las Vegas Raiders owner Mark Davis in 2021.
Tom Brady has since acquired a minority stake in the Aces organization. MGM retains a 42.5% ownership position in T-Mobile Arena, which is the Aces’ home court that it shares with the NHL Vegas Golden Knights. The Connecticut Sun is owned by the Mohegan Tribe, which operates Mohegan Sun.
Eleven months after the Aces claimed the team’s first WNBA title, Harris hosted the women’s hoops squad in DC during an official White House visit.
The winners!” Harris said as she entered the East Room greeting the Aces. “I hope you have an idea of how proud you make all of us in our country. Your work and your leadership and your excellence will impact people all over the world.”
The Aces went 26-10 during the 2022 regular season, tying them for the best record with the Chicago Sky. They cruised through the playoffs with a 2-0 series win against the Phoenix Mercury and a 3-1 series win over the Seattle Storm before topping the Sun in the Finals.
The Las Vegas Aces are women who dream with ambition. Women who lead with conviction. Trailblazers who continuously breathe new life into the idea that if you can see her, you can be her.
And they are WNBA champions.
— Vice President Kamala Harris (@VP) August 29, 2023
Odds Favor Repeat
The Las Vegas Aces are showing no signs that they’re ready to hand over their reign as the top team in the WNBA. The Aces finished the 2023 regular season at 30-6 to claim the top seed heading into the playoffs, which begin on September 13.
DraftKings has the Aces at -175 to win the WNBA Finals for the second year in a row. The New York Liberty has the next shortest odds at +160.
A winning $100 bet on -175 would net $57.14.
Second Gentleman Super Fan
The Aces’ DC visit came the same week as Las Vegas star A’ja Wilson tied the league’s single-game scoring mark with a staggering 53 points. While President Joe Biden and First Lady Dr. Jill Biden were not in attendance and were instead on vacation, Harris brought the nation’s Second Gentleman, Doug Emhoff, to the ceremony.
Harris labeled Emhoff, an entertainment lawyer, as a “real champion for women’s equality and empowerment and a big fan and supporter of women’s athletics.”
Emhoff addressed the Aces by saying he recently tagged along with his wife to Ghana where the WNBA, in a partnership with NBA Africa, held its first all-girls NBA clinic in the impoverished country.
I’m a huge sports fan, and women’s sports in particular,” Emhoff told the Aces. “I did the first WNBA event in Ghana with a bunch of young girls who are playing basketball there. So, the impact that you’re having is not just here, not just in Las Vegas, not just across the country, but it really is across the world.”
Emhoff said he’s an Aces fan except when they’re playing the Los Angeles Sparks. Harris and Emhoff maintain private residences in both San Francisco and the Brentwood neighborhood of Los Angeles.