Lauren Jackson will once again play basketball for Australia. (Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images)

WNBA legend Lauren Jackson is back playing professional basketball, joining the Albury Wodonga Bandits for the inaugural NBL1 East season in her native Australia.

The 40-year-old is a three-time WNBA MVP, four-time Olympian and five-time WNBL champion. A seven-time WNBA All-Star, she was a member of the Seattle Storm’s first WNBA championship team in 2004 and also their second in 2010 after being drafted No. 1 overall by the team in 2001. Her jersey number (15) has since been retired by the Storm.

Throughout her WNBA career, Jackson averaged 18.9 points, 7.7 rebounds, 1.8 blocks and 1.4 assists through 31.9 minutes per game across 317 games in the regular season. In 31 postseason games, she averaged 17.5 points, 7.8 rebounds and 1.5 blocks per game.

She last played in 2016 with the Canberra Capitals of the WNBL and was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 2021.

With the Bandits, she will play in the stadium that bears her name, the Lauren Jackson Sports Center.

“We’re just over the moon that Lauren’s playing for her hometown and her home club,” said Bandits president Luke Smith. “It’s huge for the Albury Wodonga Bandits and for the Albury Wodonga community.

“I think it’s going to be a really big year and we’re really looking forward to her playing in a stadium named after herself and in front of her friends, family and her two boys. Our young players are going to have a massive opportunity to play and train with arguably the world’s best-ever female basketball player. It’s huge for them, it’s huge for every kid and it’s huge for every basketball player in Albury Wodonga.”