When Sydney Colson was preparing for Athletes Unlimited Pro Basketball’s inaugural season in 2022, she was 32 years old and thought she’d seen the last of her WNBA days.
After all, she’d put in seven seasons (2011, 2015-20), and was somewhat of a journeywoman after stops in New York, San Antonio, Minnesota, Las Vegas, and Chicago. The 2021 campaign passed her by, and she was ready for a career change after averaging 3.3 points and 2.0 assists in 12.4 minutes per game across 164 career contests.
“I was at a point in my career, I guess, I was content with being done and AU was a wonderful opportunity just to keep playing because I still felt competitive,” Colson said during a conversation in December. “I still loved basketball.”
And it showed during that first season with AU Pro Basketball when then newly hired Las Vegas Aces coach Becky Hammon and president Nikki Fargas watched a few games and recognized more than an on-court component to help structure a revised roster. It was what she could bring off the court.
Hammon and Fargas were looking for someone to help lay a foundation for a vibrant culture in the locker room, something needed to win a championship.
“I knew that was somewhere where I’ve always thrived because I care about that aspect of it a lot, with relationships, making sure people are good in the locker room,” Colson said. “And I know it’s a tough pill to swallow, for people to be role players sometimes or bench players. And I knew that it wasn’t something that attacked my pride.”
Not when she assumed her career was over and she was venturing into the entertainment field, pursuing a path in acting and comedy.
Fast forward to 2024, Colson is a two-time WNBA champion and has become a popular face of the league in a facet that has drawn additional fans to all women’s basketball.
As the Aces were approaching their second straight WNBA title last Fall, Colson and former Las Vegas-teammate Theresa Plaisance, who played with AU Pro Hoops last season, introduced their comical antics with an “unscripted comedy series” entitled “The Syd + TP Show.”
“I think that there’s a plan and a purpose for my life,” Colson said. “I’ve just met a lot of people, (writers) writing these stories covering us, letting people know things that have happened with me or my trajectory. Our coaching staff is part of it, our team, fans, and so many people have played a role. And for me, saying this in the most humble way, it’s not surprising to me because I’ve always believed that God had a purpose in my life. And I always knew that it was tied up in the energy that I bring, my personality.
“I feel like the older I get the more my faith grows. There’s purpose in everything, the way I see it there really aren’t too many coincidences in life. Things are orchestrated for a reason. I just look at things now and I had to go through some stuff or to be in some situations for it to be the way it is and I’m grateful for it.”
And as the 34-year-old approaches her third year with the three-year-old AU Hoops league, her perspective on life — like her faith — continues to grow with everything falling into place when she least expected it.
“Basketball has allowed me to meet a lot of teammates, meet a lot fans, meet a lot of people, people that not only I have impacted, but people who have impacted me,” Colson said. “I’m super appreciative for it. It isn’t what I expected. I wasn’t thinking that I was gonna win a championship in the league before I was done. But, things are funny. Life is funny in that way.
“I wake up every day, I just try to keep working toward being a better person, being a better player, being better in my acting, learning more about comedy and the craft that I want to be in after basketball. And, I just try not to worry about anything. I just think things will take care of themselves if I’m doing the work on my end.”
Colson's personality and competitive spirit benefit Aces locker room
Sydney Colson, Credit: Stephen Gosling
Shine, Grind, Hustle: Theresa Plaisance brings infectious vibes to AU Hoops
© Athletes Unlimited, LLC 2023 / Credit: Jade Hewitt Media
Maddy Siegrist returns to Dallas for first AU Pro Basketball campaign
Image Courtesy of Villanova Athletics
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