Napheesa Collier bites her gold medal during the women's basketball medal ceremony at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 on Aug. 8, 2021 in Saitama, Japan.
Napheesa Collier collected her first Olympic gold medal this past summer. Next up, she’s going to be a mom.
The WNBA All-Star and forward on the 2020 U.S. Olympic women’s basketball team announced she and fiancé Alex Bazzell are expecting a baby girl in the new year. The longtime couple shared the news, along with some photos from the gender reveal, with People.
“I have always wanted to be a mom,” Collier, 25, told People.
The news, Collier said, was a “surprise,” but also “such a blessing.” The husband-and-wife-to-be are embracing this next chapter in their lives.
“We had this vision of building a family,” Bazzell, a skills coach who works with NBA and WNBA players, told People. “We just didn’t know when that would take place or where that would take place, which I think we’re still juggling some of those questions. But it’s like anything else, the sports environment prepares us for something like that. We’re adding one member to our team, and trying to figure out what's best collectively for the team.”
Collier and Bazzell met when she was in high school and began dating a few years later while she was attending the University of Connecticut and playing for the Huskies and he was her trainer. They became engaged in 2019, the same year Collier made her WNBA debut with the Minnesota Lynx.
Drafted sixth overall, the 6-foot-1 Collier stepped right in as a main contributor for the Lynx, earning the league’s 2019 Rookie of the Year Award. She made her second WNBA All-Star Team in 2021.
The native of St. Charlies, Missouri, was a Youth Olympian in 2014, helping Team USA to a 3x3 basketball gold medal in Nanjing, China. Collier made the U.S. 5x5 team for the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 this past summer, where she came off the bench for the loaded U.S. team that won a seventh consecutive gold medal.
The basketball-loving family is already looking forward to sharing that passion with their new daughter.
“I have this vision in my head of Alex sitting with the baby just cheering me on at the games,” Collier told People. “I am really excited for that.”