Looking to ace their way to a second straight title, the Las Vegas Aces starting lineup for the WNBA Finals featured Alysha Clark, Kelsey Plum, A’Ja Wilson, Jackie Young, and Cayla George. After benching Chelsea Gray and Kiah Stokes to injury, the Aces were forced to find a new route to victory.
Having defeated the Dallas Wings in Round 2, coach Becky Hammon and company entered as -210 favorites to win the 2023 WNBA championship. The Aces won the WNBA Finals in 2022 in a 3-1 victory over the Connecticut Sun. Now, after three hard-fought matchups in this year’s final round, the Aces are the newly crowned 2023 WNBA Champions.
Las Vegas Aces Starting 5 Vs. New York Liberty
WNBA viewership was higher than ever this playoff season, making WNBA betting more popular than ever. The Las Vegas Aces starting lineup saw minor fluctuations during the finals. Apart from a few exceptions, the Aces’ starting lineup remained consistent season-long, offering strong insight into the championship.
Each initial playoff game reflected the same starters as well. Fans saw these five players begin most regular season games and championship games against the New York Liberty:
- G — Chelsea Gray (Duke)
- G — Kelsey Plum (Washington)
- F — A’Ja Wilson (South Carolina)
- G — Jackie Young (Notre Dame)
- C — Kiah Stokes (Connecticut)
Keep reading for an in-depth look at what each Las Vegas Aces starting player brought to the court.
After being selected 11th overall in the 2014 WNBA Draft, Chelsea Gray soon found success with the Los Angeles Sparks. She played a pivotal role in the team’s 2016 WNBA Championship journey, scoring double figures in 7 of the team’s 33 games that season. Come 2022, Gray found her way to another WNBA Championship victory — this time with the Las Vegas Aces. She was named 2022 WNBA Finals MVP and hopes to lead the team to similar success this year.
Las Vegas guard Kelsey Plum was another player integral in the Aces’ success last season. Plum entered the WNBA in 2017 as the first overall draft pick and quickly made her way onto the 2017 WNBA All-Rookie Team as a member of the San Antonio Stars. She won a US gold medal in the 2021 Olympics as part of Team USA, then claimed a World Cup gold medal in 2022. Plum joined the Las Vegas roster in 2018 and quickly became one of the team’s top-scoring players. Come 2022, Plum ranked second in the league for overall scoring and was named All-Star Game MVP and All-WNBA First Team.
In addition to Wilson averaging 36 points per game for the Aces last season, she was named 2022 WNBA Defensive Player of the Year, WNBA MVP, and All-WNBA First Team. Following in Plum’s footsteps, Wilson was selected as the first overall pick in the 2018 WNBA Draft and quickly made headlines as the WNBA Rookie of the Year.
The Aces gained all-star selections by adding No. 1 draft picks Plum and Wilson to the roster, so the team decided to press its luck once again in 2019 by selecting Notre Dame junior Jackie Young as the first overall pick in the WNBA Draft. Young led the Aces in assists during 18 games in her rookie season. By the 2022 championship season, she led Las Vegas scoring on five outings and received the WNBA Most Improved Player award.
Drafted as the 11th selection in the first round of the 2015 WNBA Draft, center Kiah Stokes is a veteran on the Las Vegas Aces lineup. Before moving to the Aces, Stokes began her pro ball career as a member of the New York Liberty, where she was named to the 2015 WNBA All-Rookie Team. In 2017, she led the Liberty in blocked shots, ranking 11th for blocks and 17th for rebounds in the WNBA overall.
Las Vegas Aces Full Roster
|1||G||Kierstan Bell||Ohio State, FGU|
|7||F||Alysha Clark||Middle Tennessee|
|81||C||Alaina Coates||South Carolina|
|51||G||Sydney Colson||Texas A&M|
|2||G||Riguna Williams||Miami (FL)|
|22||F||A'ja Wilson||South Carolina|
|0||G||Jackie Young||Notre Dame|
Las Vegas Aces FAQ
- Who Are The Las Vegas Aces’ Starting Five?
- Who Is Las Vegas Aces’ Starting Forward?
- Who Is Las Vegas Aces’ Best Player?
What is The Las Vegas Aces’ Starting Five?
Chelsea Gray, Kelsey Plum, A’Ja Wilson, Jackie Young, and Kiah Stokes tipped off championship play against the New York Liberty. However, after Kiah Stokes and Chelsea Gray suffered Game 3 injuries, Alysha Clark and Cayla George joined the starting five in the final game.
Who Is Las Vegas Aces’ Starting Forward?
Although Las Vegas added legendary forward Candace Parker to its roster this year, CP3 has been on the team’s inactive list since July due to a foot injury. In Parker’s absence, the Aces have called on 2022 WNBA MVP A’Ja Wilson to guide the team to a second championship win. Despite seeing less play time than three out of the five starters, Wilson still leads the team with an average contribution of 10 two-pointers and 5.8 successful free throws per game.
Who Is the Las Vegas Aces’ Best Player?
In the absence of hoops veteran Candace Parker, A’Ja Wilson serves as the top Las Vegas Aces player. The 26 year-old phenom leads her team in points scored as well as total rebounds, and those talents are proving especially useful this 2023 WNBA playoff season. Wilson leads the team with a double-double average of 25.8 points and 11.2 rebounds per game this playoff season.