The WNBA is the most inclusive professional sports league in the country. Period. They welcome and support LGBTQ fans, celebrate LGBTQ equality during Pride month, and sell Pride T-shirts featuring team logos and other rainbow-themed swag. Several teams also host individual pride nights throughout the month of June, and players happily attend Pride marches and parades.
The inclusivity doesn’t just extend to fans of the WNBA, either. It also extends to players.
There are many out and proud ballers throughout the league now who speak openly about being LGBTQ and wear it on their sleeves like a badge of honor. For those of us who are basketball fans and lovers of athletes of all shapes and sizes, it’s a beautiful thing. And since we’re right smack in the middle of the 2017 WNBA season, I’ve compiled a list of incredibly talented WNBA players who are LGBTQ and entirely crush-worthy. Whether you tend to fall for the strong silent type, the cocky one, the outspoken activist, or someone who’s fun and flirty, I guarantee there’s a WNBA player on this list for you.
1. Brittney Griner, Phoenix Mercury
Just want to say Thank you to everyone that has reach out with texts, calls, posts! Big thanks to the X-Factor and the Phoenix Mercury organization for all the love and support! Can’t wait to be back on the court with my team ASAP! @griner42allthetimefan @griner_greece Thank y’all for all the AMAZING POST AND KIND WORDS AND SUPPORT AS WELL! ♥️♥️♥️♥️♥️♥️♥️♥️♥️♥️♥️♥️♥️
Brittney Griner is six-foot-eight and her wingspan is large enough to wrap her arms around you twice. That’s some serious snuggle power, right there. This self-professed goofball loves to joke around and have fun. Off the court, she’s a carefree, skateboarding, Nike-wearing, tattooed gamer who loves bacon. On the court, she’s a badass. She not only led the WNBA in blocks two years in a row, but she can also dunk the ball—and by dunk I mean, throw down—with fervor. If you’re into a strong, self-assured, flirty woman who likes to laugh and hold doors open for you, Griner is your girl. She can also reach the glasses in the top cupboard for you, too. So that’s a plus.
2. Diana Taurasi, Phoenix Mercury
If there were a villain in the WNBA, Diana Taurasi would be it. She’s the most confident, cocky, and hard-working player in the league and often considered to be the GOAT—greatest of all time. Taurasi loves to talk trash, pull jerseys, make comments, and get into opposing players’ heads. She’s the kind of person who walks through the door and commands the attention of everyone in the room. Some fans love to hate her. And even those who hate her respect her game. If you’re attracted to a confident woman who throws her entire being into everything she does and isn’t afraid of a challenge, DT is it. You might have to compete for her time though, because basketball will always be her number one love.
3. Sue Bird, Seattle Storm
Sue Bird is literally the strong, silent, guarded type. As a point guard, her passing game is like that of an assassin—quick, tight and always on target. Bird led the league in assists three times, and is considered one of the top 15 WNBA players of all time. Yet throughout her 15 years in the WNBA, she’s never spoken about her personal life to the public or media… until now. Bird recently announced that she is gay and dating soccer star Megan Rapinoe. If someone who’s reliable, thoughtful, and careful with your heart tops your list of turn-ons, Bird definitely is all three. She’ll also keep your relationship private, which is always a plus in lesbian circles.
4. Elena Delle Donne, Washington Mystics
Instead of talking trash or gloating, Delle Donne lets her game on the court speak for itself. Coming into the WNBA, she was billed as one of the top three players in the 2013 draft (alongside Brittney Griner). She was the league’s Most Valuable Player in 2015 and has endorsement deals with Nike, Gatorade, and more. Delle Donne also cares a lot about family. She asked for a trade from the Chicago Sky to play for the Washington Mystics so she could be closer to home and her disabled older sister so that she could help take care of her in the off-season (Delle Donne is even an ambassador for the Special Olympics!). If you’re looking for a WNBA All-Star who’s a homebody with strong family ties, a sensitive side, and a humble demeanor, look no further than Delle Donne.
5. Stefanie Dolson, Washington Mystics
In spring 2016, Stefanie Dolson came out as a member of the LGBTQ community in an interview with ESPN and said, “Not everyone in the WNBA needs to be out, but I feel called to lead an authentic life in the open. I know who I am and I don’t care if people judge me.” She’s described herself as someone who is into fashion, fun, and flare, often dying her hair different colors and experimenting with different styles. Her life motto is: If they’re going to stare, they might as well stare at something fun. Dolson is the perfect player to crush on if you’re into someone who’s funny, lighthearted, and open-minded and doesn’t really care what other people think.
6. Seimone Augustus, Minnesota Lynx
In 2015, Seimone Augustus wrote a deeply personal and candid article for The Players’ Tribune called “It Is So Ordered.” In the piece, she talks about growing up as a gay kid in the south, coming out to her parents, and how she wondered if she’d ever be able to get married someday. She also talked about how much it meant to her to actually get married to the love of her life. Augustus met her now-wife in Minneapolis shortly after being drafted by the Minnesota Lynx in 2006. They have been together ever since and were legally married in Hawaii two months before gay marriage became the law of the land. Augustus is the definition of devotion. She’s been with the same WNBA team for the past 11 years, as well as the same woman. That kind of dedication makes one’s heart flutter, especially if you’re someone who dreams of settling down for the long haul.
7. Layshia Clarendon, Atlanta Dream
Layshia Clarendon likes to speak her mind. She’s well-known around the league as a vocal leader on the court for the Atlanta Dream and an LGBTQ activist off the court. Clarendon describes herself as “black, biracial, gay, female, genderqueer, and Christian.” And in 2015, she was named Outsports Female Hero of the Year because of her fearless activism and willingness to speak out and openly about LGBTQ rights. If grabbing a megaphone and attending rallies is your thing, you can expect Clarendon to be there right alongside you in all of her genderqueer glory.
8. Angel McCoughtry, Atlanta Dream
For someone who is a natural-born dreamer, it seems fitting that Angel McCoughtry plays for the Atlanta Dream. After realizing she was working herself and her body too hard, McCoughtry made some big life changes. She came out on Instagram, and started practicing yoga and resting her mind. She also started taking joy in the little things in life, like sunsets, warm summer afternoon cookouts, and quiet walks in the park. This season, McCoughtry decided to take a break from basketball to rest her body and open an ice cream parlor in Atlanta instead. She calls it her “happy place.” Don’t worry, McCoughtry will be back on the court again next season. In the meantime, you can sidle up to a table and order a cone of Champion Chip ice cream while dreaming of long walks in the park with this lesbian Angel.
9. Candice Dupree, Indiana Fever & DeWanna Bonner, Phoenix Mercury
It’s so hard not to crush on this adorable WNBA couple. Candice Dupree and DeWanna Bonner are not only married, but they both played on the same WNBA team—the Phoenix Mercury—for seven seasons. Sharing the basketball court with your loved one takes some major teamwork, and these two managed to figure it out. They recently welcomed twin daughters into their family! Bonner took this season off to have the kiddos and it looks like Dupree is going to have to trade in her basketball for baby bottles, because taking care of twins is no joke. (I should know—I’m a twin.)