After finishing the 2019 WNBA season the Connecticut Sun lost in the finals to the eventual champions the Washington Mystics. Will 2020 be their year?
The Connecticut Sun finished the season second after the regular season. They then lost in the finals to the all conquering Washington Mystics. The Sun relied heavily on their strating five who were the only group to start all 34 games for the season.
This free agnecy period, three members of that starting five are free agents. The Sun will certainly want to keep all of them.They made one trade in the season, sending Alex Bently to the Atlanta Dream For Layshia Clarendon after an issue with a team mate.
The Sun have the 10th, 11th, 23rd and 35th pick in the 2020 WNBA draft. Lets take a look at the players the Sun have the ability to re-sign.
Shekinna Stricklen started every game for the Sun. She averaged 9.0 points, 1.9 rebounds, 1.1 assists and 1.0 stgeal per game. The Sun would like to re-sign her but if another small forward is available who has a better one-on-one defensive game, they might displace her in the starting lineup.
Natisha Hiedman played 20 games for the Sun. She averaged 3.7 points and 1.9 rebounds per game. Hiedman’s impact cannot be quatified by numbers alone however. She is an x-factor type player who gives a spark off the bench every time she goes on the court.
Coming over via trade from the Atlanta Dream, Layshia Clarendon only played nine games after recovering from injury. She averaged only 6.2 points, 2.4 rebounds and 2.1 assists in limited minutes.
Clarendon is one of the best floor generals in the WNBA so the Sun will be looking to secure her signature. If they can go a full season with Clrendon running the second unit they may go one better than last year.
Rachel Banham is one of the best team mates and cheer leaders in the WNBA. She can also shoot the ball really well. Her problem is opportunity, averaging 12.2 minutes in 29 games. She only averaged 3.6 points, 1.0 rebounds and 0.9 assists per game.
Banham may look to other teams to get more opportunity on the court but the potential of a championship might be too much to lure her away from the Sun. Watch this space.
Morgan Tuck played 33 of a possible 34 games last season. She averaged 3.7 points and 2.0 rebounds per game. She was a key piece off the bench when coach Curt Miller rested his starting five. The Sun will want to re-sign her.
Probably the most crucial signature for the Sun, Jonquel Jones is going to have lots of clubs with lots of money trying to lure her away. She averaged 14.6 points, 9.7 rebounds, 2.0 blocks, 1.5 assists and 1.3 steals per game.
At 6’6″ Jones is the future of the WNBA and the Sun put complete faith in her to perform for this team when they traded Chiney Ogwumike to the Los Angeles Sparks last off season. This may be the hardest signature to secure but the Sun will most probably core her to keep her.
Courtney Williams was incredible for this team. She averaged 13.2 points, 5.6 rebounds, 3.8 assists and 1.4 steals per game. She was one of the best guards in the entire WNBA and was a key piece to the success of the Sun.
They are going to sign her with the extra money the new collective bargain agreement gives the team. She has played well enough to deserve some good money. However, hers is another signature that other teams are going to be chasing hard.
Bria Holmes was the most used reserve last season for the Sun, playing 15.6 minutes per game. She averaged 6.3 points, 1.4 rebounds and 0.9 assists per game. The Sun are going to want to re-sign her as she knows the systems well and will continue to be good off the bench.