The Chicago Sky have put Gabby Williams on the full-season suspended list, head coach James Wade said Thursday.
The move comes after the French national team announced Williams as part of its roster competing in the FIBA Women’s EuroBasket in June. Williams, who holds dual citizenship, is also expected to play for France at the Tokyo Olympics, taking her national team obligations through the end of the summer and a majority of the WNBA season.
Wade is currently working to finalize his 11-player roster by the WNBA’s May 13 deadline. With Williams on the suspended list, the Sky retain her rights and are able to take her salary off the books for the season.
While the Sky reportedly weighed the option of trading Williams on draft day, they didn’t end up making a move. Now, they face the difficult task of replacing the guard, who was selected to the All-EuroLeague Women First Team and named Defensive Player of the Year in 2021. Williams is also coming off her most productive season in the WNBA, having averaged a career-high 24.8 minutes and 7.7 points per game in 2020.
Wade is confident they’ll be able to find someone to fill her spot given the team’s depth in a season with high expectations.
“We’re pretty solid,” Wade said ahead of training camp. “Gabby is a talented player, and she does what she does. We’ll try our best to make do.”