WNBA Star Candace Parker Gushes Over Her Spouse & Children
Candace Parker truly has it all!
She spent 13 years playing professional basketball for the LA Sparks, another two with Chicago Sky and won a championship with both teams. She's also out, proud, and married to fellow basketball player Anna Petrakova with whom she is raising a family.
Now Parker is making the move to Las Vegas to play for the Aces, who she will take the court with for the first time in May.
Along with her gig as an analyst of Inside the NBA alongside, hosted by NBA great including Shaquille O’Neal. She’s also made history as the first woman to commentate for the NBA. And she credits this latest decision to following her daughter for a change.
Candace Parker on Instagram: "My family is my reason and my purpose. They have given me the greatest joys I’ve ever experienced and continue to show me new levels of love and devotion I never knew existed. When I made the decision to go to Chicago in 2021, I made the decision to go home and be with my family in the place where it all began. I am beyond grateful for the opportunity to win a championship in my hometown and parade down the same streets I watched the Bulls parade down as a young girl first falling in love with the game of basketball. As I’ve gone through free agency this time around, of course I’m thinking of where I can compete for my third championship, but the words home and family are what I kept coming back to. No different than when I signed with Chicago. Throughout her 13 years, Lailaa has always sacrificed for me; always put me first; and always supported me in what I wanted or needed to do, even when it was tough on her. I need to be there for my daughter, for my son, for my wife. I can’t be without them for parts of the season when Lailaa is in school and I won’t miss her volleyball games or school dances simply because of distance. Lailaa starts high school in August and I need to be there for her, just as she’s been there for me. After evaluating the landscape together with my family, we’ve decided the Las Vegas Aces are the right organization for us at this point in our lives. I’m forever appreciative of everyone in Chicago - our fans, teammates, coaches, and ownership. But more than the past two seasons, I’m thankful to the city that raised me, the childhood friends I still have to this day, the teachers I still am learning from, and the moments in time that will forever be in my heart. While Chicago will always be my home, my family’s home is on the west coast. To play for a championship close to home is the perfect situation for us. I’m looking forward to continuing the journey this summer in Las Vegas ♠️"
Speaking with Essense she gushed about her daughter and how she gets to be close to her. “As I’ve gone on this journey, my family has always been first and foremost,” she began. “Lailaa, my daughter, she’s 13. She’s followed me everywhere. She’s followed me to Russia, China, Turkey, to Chicago, everywhere. It’s time that I follow her. So I think this was the best of both worlds. I’m close enough where I can get home on an off day when she’s still in school. I’m close enough where I won’t miss her first high school volleyball game or I won’t miss taking her to school every now and again. And she can come out and live with me in Vegas this summer until school starts back again. I made that decision with her in mind first and foremost.”
Candace Parker on Instagram: "Sometimes doing what you love requires you to be away from who you love. I miss you ❤️🥺 Thank you for always holding it down @petrarulove while Lailaa finishes finals at school and then we can all experience Chi-Town summer together!🎵🎶They ask me what I do and who I do it for🎵🎶 #Mama #Tink #StandingBaby 😂 (Goose LOVES to stand and he also is like his Mommy and LOVES to be hyped up)😂😂😂😂"
She also took a moment to gush about her wife Petrkova. “My wife is unbelievable, taking care of Lailaa who’s her bonus daughter, and our son who’s 13 months now. I think it’s amazing to be able to be at peace at work and know things are running smoothly at home. Also, I just think it’s about giving yourself grace. You are doing the best that you can; learning from your mistakes, learning from things you need to do better. But it’s also about knowing that you’re doing the best you can and you need to take time for yourself sometimes. That’s not selfish, that’s actually going to help you be better at work and a better parent at home.”
The two were married in 2019 but only revealed that information publically on their two-year anniversary when Parker posted the beautiful photos on her Instagram, celebrating the milestone, effectively coming out for the first time.
Candace Parker on Instagram: "Happy Anniversary Моя жена! 2 years ago, I got to marry my best friend in front of our close family and friends. My heart could have exploded. I cried like a baby….To know me or you is to know our love. This journey hasn’t been easy. I am proud of us and what we have built and who we have grown to become both individually and together. Thank you for always loving Lailaa as your own, being my calm, my support, my voice of reason, my laughs, my cuddles, my dance in the rain, my happy, my home… Thanks for constantly challenging me and telling me when I’m wrong 🙄. I LOVE YOU🐞 I appreciate you, I value you and what we have. We’ve always dreamed of growing our family….it’s surreal that we now have a baby on the way! Lailaa is pumped to be a big sister! You couldn’t be more beautiful! Glowing, while understanding that I have to constantly love, kiss, and talk to your belly AND yes… play Jay-Z for the baby (Goose knows “Song Cry” already by heart😜 !) I can’t wait to embark on this next chapter in life with you! “So, I love you because the entire universe conspired to help me find you.” -Alchemist"
Good to see that happily ever after is still, well, ever aftering!