September 27, 2023 

Locked on Women’s Basketball: Alyssa Thomas and Connecticut Sun did what they had to do

Sun split games with Liberty; Tiffany Hayes is timeless

The Connecticut Sun came into New York and split games with the Liberty, accomplishing their goal, Alyssa Thomas told The Next‘s Howard Megdal. Now, heading to Mohegan Sun for Game 3 Friday night, Megdal discusses all things Connecticut with Sun beat reporter, Jacqueline LeBlanc. Everything from DeWanna Bonner‘s role in the history of the league to how Tiffany Hayes keeps finding ways to dominate in any area come up, while the chances of the Sun rest on the very capable back of generational talent Thomas.

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Jacqueline talks with Howard about how the Sun have adjusted to a new coaching staff and system this summer, and how the Sun have navigated lineup changes.

“The Sun are so, so versatile, and I think that’s been their strength for a long time, but also their strength this year, and just — the amount of changes that they’ve had to go through all season starting in training camp with a new staff, a new system, new players and new teammates… a month into the season DeWanna Bonner, a 6-4-3 perimeter player, is moved to the four, sometimes the five. So I’ve been really impressed by DeWanna being able to move out of position for the rest of the season — basically after [Sun center Brionna Jones] we went down [with a season-ending injury] in June.”

Later in the episode, Jacqueline discusses the impact of Alyssa Thomas, who finished second in WNBA MVP voting this season.

“Alyssa, she’s as humble as she comes…I think it was interesting that she said she’s been snubbed a lot in her career. I think that also extends outside of the WNBA, possibly in EuroLeague, Final Fours, on the world stage and FIBA…[but] what she’ll always say is the one piece of hardware that she really, really cares about is getting that championship, and nothing else really matters to her.”

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Written by The Next


  1. RM Williams on September 28, 2023 at 12:41 pm

    Alyssa Thomas, a pain in the ass to play against, but what a player. A relentless, focused machine that gets the job done, without fanfare and without ego. Not a flamboyant player, but perhaps the blueprint for professionalism. There’s a good chance I would have voted for her for MVP. As much as I love UConn, and as much as I think Stewie was equally deserving, they both share a similar humility and absence of ego. Too bad I can’t say the same for A’ja Wilson. Her skills are undeniable, but to publicly broadcast “it hurt like hell” smacks of neediness and narcissism, two fairly unattractive traits. Confide in your coaches, your friends and colleagues, but the entire world doesn’t need to know that it hurt. To announce your pain is begging for condolences and reassurances. We don’t need to know how brave you were to not let it affect you in the 2nd Dallas game. We just don’t need to know. Privacy is fun. Try it, A’ja.
    Alyssa doesn’t have a statue. Stewie doesn’t have a statue. At some time they both might get one. What they do have is character. I hope Alyssa gets the ring. She’s right, that’s the one that really matters.

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