Storm newcomer Mikiah ‘Kiki’ Herbert Harrigan announced on Thursday that she’s pregnant and will miss the 2021 season.
“I’m very much looking forward to motherhood and starting a family with my boyfriend Stanford,” Herbert Harrigan said in a statement released by the team. “While I am disappointed to miss the 2021 WNBA season, I appreciate the supportive environment the Storm family has provided for me.
“I will be cheering on the Storm from the sidelines and wish the whole organization great success this season. See you next year!!”
The Storm acquired Herbert Harrigan on Feb. 10 from the Minnesota Lynx in exchange for a 2022 first-round WNBA draft pick.
The 6-foot-2 forward appeared in a game this season and was scoreless in 1:13 minutes.
Herbert Harrigan, the No. 6 overall pick in the 2020 WNBA draft, averaged 3.8 points, 2.3 rebounds and 11.1 minutes in 21 games as a reserve for Minnesota last season.
Per the WNBA’s collective bargaining agreement, players receive fully paid maternity leave.
“The deal represents moving forward both from a WNBA perspective, but also in general, for women in sports and society,” Sue Bird, a member of the WNBA Players Association executive committee, told the Times last year when the CBA was ratified. “When you look at things like what we’re able to do with maternity leave and family planning … We’re going to be looked at as—I think—pioneers in the sports world.”
Herbert Harrigan’s $66,555 salary in 2021 counts against the Storm’s salary cap, but she moves to the inactive list and her absence opens up a spot on the 12-player active roster.
“We are so happy for Kiki and her family as she starts this exciting new chapter of her life and look forward to welcoming her back in 2022,” Storm general manager Talisa Rhea said.
The Storm (4-1) has 11 active players heading into Friday’s 7 p.m. game against Minnesota (0-3) at Angel of the Winds Arena.
Newcomer Katie Lou Samuelson, who has been away participating with Team USA in a 3×3 Olympic qualifying tournament, is expected to rejoin the Storm next week.
— Coach Dan Hughes rejoined the Storm after missing Tuesday’s 90-87 overtime win over Connecticut to attend his son Bryce’s graduation from the Air Force Academy.
Correction: This story has been updated to reflect that Herbert-Harrigan was acquired on Feb. 20, 2021 by the Storm, not 2020 as originally reported.