The Chicago Sky clinched their first championship in franchise history on Sunday, downing the Phoenix Mercury 3-1 in a best-of-five series. On Tuesday, the Sky trekked down the streets of Chicago for a celebration parade.
And hometown hero Candace Parker celebrated with an epic Portillos order. The Sky are the best team in Chicago right now, and they’ll have a good chance to defend their title in 2022.
The WNBA is mulling schedule changes, according to the Associated Press, so we don’t know exactly when next season will start. The AP says the WNBA is considering expanding to a 36-game schedule.
For what it’s worth, last season began in mid-May.
But while we don’t know the 2022 Sky schedule yet, BetRivers Sportsbook has 2022 WNBA championship odds available.
Let’s get to them.
2022 Chicago Sky WNBA title odds
Here are the odds at BetRivers as of Oct. 19:
|Las Vegas Aces||+300|
|New York Liberty||+3,000|
It’s a three-way tie for the shortest odds between the Sky, Sun and Aces. The Sky defeated the Sun in the playoffs en route to the championship this past season.
But there is the business to take care of this offseason. Finals MVP Kahleah Copper is an unrestricted free agent, as are key starters Courtney Vandersloot and Allie Quigley. If Chicago can resign that trio, the Sky will have a real chance to repeat. If not, the Sky will need to replace their production.
We are in the thick of Chicago’s title window, as a few key players are in or approaching their mid-30s. Parker is 35, and it will be fascinating to see how much longer she wants to keep playing, especially after a feat such as bringing a championship to Chicago.
No WNBA team has repeated as champions since the Los Angeles Sparks in 2001 and 2002. Based on the odds and the roster the Sky could throw out next season, they are surefire contenders.
Sports betting at Wintrust Arena in the future?
Team owner Michael Alter wants to bring retail sports betting to Wintrust Arena, the home of the Sky. The Sports Wagering Act allowed for in-stadium sportsbooks at select Illinois venues.
The problem? The Sky were not included in the list of teams and are unable to apply for a sports betting license. Alter has since been hit with a 5,000 fine for lobbying Mayor Lori Lightfoot without registering.
Alter wrote in an email to Chicago first lady Amy Eshleman in December:
“I am writing you now to formally get the mayor’s support for pending legislation that will — FINALLY — provide an opportunity for the sky to get a gaming license. As you know from our previous conversation, in the big gaming bill passed in (June) 2019, all the men’s professional teams were (given) the right to buy a license. The sky was not included.”
Lightfoot is a noted Sky fan and was in attendance when they won the title on Sunday.
Rep. Michael Zalewski brought up the issue at a House Executive Committee gaming meeting in April, and there is legislative support to include the Sky despite Alter’s fine. It may not happen in time for next season, but it should at some point in the future.