Pregnant WNBA star Dearica Hamby was traded from Las Vegas to Los Angeles on Saturday and responded with a scathing Instagram post saying she had been “lied to, bullied, manipulated and discriminated against.”
Hamby, who has a 5-year-old daughter, announced during the Aces championship parade in September that she was pregnant with her second child.
The 29-year-old claims the Aces, where she spent her entire professional career, subjected her to “unprofessional and unethical” treatment that left her traumatized before sending her away.
“I was accused of signing my extension, knowingly pregnant. This is incorrect,” she wrote. “I was told I was ‘a question mark’ and I was told I would ‘get pregnant again’ and there was concern about my level of commitment to the team.”
“I was told ‘I didn’t keep my promise’ (Because ‘no one expected me to get pregnant within two years.’) Did the team expect me not to get pregnant in exchange for the contract extension?” she added.
“I was asked if I planned my pregnancy. When I answered ‘no’ I was told I was ‘not taking any precautions not to get pregnant’. I was traded because I wouldn’t be ready and we need bodies.’”
The WNBA Players Association said it is investigating Hamby’s complaints.
“A member of our union has raised serious concerns about the behavior of members of Las Vegas Aces management,” the company said in a statement.
“We will look into this matter and we will conduct a comprehensive investigation to ensure that her rights under the [union contract]as well as her rights and protections under state and federal law, have not been violated.”
The WNBA received kudos when it signed a 2020 contract that would require teams to pay players their full wages during maternity leave and provide standard accommodations for nursing mothers.
In her Instagram post, Hamby – who was the league’s sixth woman of the year in 2019 and 2020 – said she planned to play and train this season, but team staff belittled her efforts.
“To be treated this way by an organization, by WOMEN who are mothers, who claim to be ‘in these shoes’, who preach family, chemistry and women’s empowerment is disappointing and sickens me,” she wrote.
The WNBA has not publicly commented on Hamby’s allegations. The Aces, who posted two videos celebrating Hamby’s achievement and status as a mother following the trade announcement, also declined to comment.
The Aces got Amanda Zahui B. from the Los Angeles Sparks in exchange for Hamby. The Sparks get the Aces first round for 2024, and the Aces get the Sparks first round.