Liz Cambage and Los Angeles Sparks separate by mutual consent

Liz Cambage and Los Angeles Sparks separate by mutual consent

Center Liz Cambage will leave the Los Angeles Sparks in her first season with the franchise, the team announced Tuesday, describing it as a “divorce” of the Australian’s choice.

“We share Cambage’s decision to terminate his contract with the organization,” Sparks manager Eric Holoman said in a statement. “We want the best for Liz and have agreed to part ways amicably. The Sparks remain excited about our core group and are focused on our race to a playoff spot in 2022,” he added.

The four-time All-Star and former MVP candidate appeared in 25 games for the Sparks this year, where she battled COVID-19 several weeks ago. She averaged 13 points and 6.4 rebounds in 23.4 minutes per game before her departure.

The 30-year-old center, who previously played in Tulsa/Dallas and Las Vegas, signed with the Sparks in February, a prized free-agent acquisition for then-general manager and head coach Derek Fisher. Fisher was subsequently fired in June, 12 games into the season, and Fred Williams, who was close to Cambage, replaced him on the bench on an interim basis.

Although she agreed to a contractual divorce this season, Tina Charles quickly found a new home with the Seattle Storm after leaving the Phoenix Mercury. It’s unclear what Cambage’s future is in the WNBA.

Cambage made it clear, even before she was drafted into the league in 2011, that she wanted to play in Los Angeles, a place she had idolized for its basketball and Hollywood culture since she was a child. She did not appear in the WNBA in the 2012, 2014-17 and 2020 seasons, instead playing overseas and for the Australian national team, but effectively severed ties with the Opals after she was allegedly involved in a physical altercation and verbal exchange on a fight behind closed doors last summer.

The Sparks have nine games left in the regular season and are looking to return to the playoffs after missing for the first time in a decade last season. The Sparks are currently sixth in the WNBA standings.

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