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Three Reasons Why CT Sun Can Reach (And Win) 2022 WNBA Finals

While some teams around the league will offer a more measured response about their long-term goals, the Connecticut Sun have not been shy about their mindset entering the 2022 campaign.

Connecticut, as shared by Jonquel Jones, Jasmine Thomas and a cast of players, fully expects to compete for the 2022 WNBA title. Analysts and oddsmakers view the Sun as a legitimate contender to claim the organization’s first championship, as well.

And for good reason.

Here are three of the biggest reasons why the Sun can reach and win the 2022 title:

Connecticut has the reigning league MVP
In a talent-driven league, the Sun have arguably the most talented player in the reigning WNBA MVP Jonquel Jones. Jones, the 6-foot-6 forward, is returning for her sixth season after averaging 19.4 points and 11.2 rebounds while shooting 52% from the floor and 36% from long range in 2021. It was the third season where Jones was recognized an as All-Star. She continues to ascend as a face for the league and her contributions make those around her better.

“She is truly the core of what we are trying to accomplish here and how we’re going to be able to it,” Thomas said of Jones. 

Sun have high-end talent surrounding Jones
Connecticut will enter the 2022 season with four WNBA All-Stars from the previous season. Brionna Jones, the 2021 Most Improved Player, returns for her sixth season after averaging 14.7 points on 57% from the floor last season. She is one who helps the Sun have a dominant group inside including Jonquel Jones and DeWanna Bonner. The versatile Bonner is another player returning from an All-Star campaign after having averaged 15.3 points per game to go along with a career-best 3.5 assists. Courtney Williams returns to Connecticut after two seasons with the Atlanta Dream, representing the group while being named a WNBA All-Star last season. Williams averaged a career-best 16.5 points per game while shooting 38% from long range.

And then there’s veterans like forward Alyssa Thomas and Jasmine Thomas, the latter which will lead from the point guard position.

“First and foremost, I think you look at it and we’re fortunate to have perennial all-stars in the post with Alyssa Thomas, Jonquel Jones and Brionna Jones,” Sun head coach Curt Miller said.

Connecticut has veterans with postseason experience
The Sun have experienced their share of postseason disappointment, most recently being an early exit from last season’s WNBA playoffs after recording the league’s best record (and best win percentage in franchise history). But all of those playoffs shortcomings — Connecticut was one win shy of the WNBA title in 2019 — now have made the group hungrier heading into the 2022 season.

“I feel like that’s part of the ready why we’re so adamant about wanting to win the championship,” Jasmine Thomas said while referencing the team’s veteran core. “We know this is not something that you get to be part of all the time. It’s a special group and we want to win with this group.”

Jonquel Jones added: “We have been so close. We were a quarter away (in 2019). We’ve been in the semifinals a few years now. We understand we’re a team competing for a championship, and when we focus on those little things, we can be a team that wins a championship. We think this year is the year. We believe that.”

The Sun, after a loss in their season opener, will continue their season Saturday against the Los Angeles Sparks. You can watch the game on NESN+ with tip scheduled for 7 p.m. ET.

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