UNCASVILLE, CT (August 22, 2019)—Las Vegas travels to Connecticut Friday for a game with major playoff implications, as the winner will be in second place in the WNBA standings, and own the tiebreaker against the other team. The Sun and Aces tip of at the Mohegan Sun Arena at 4:30 pm PT (watch Coach Johnson’s video scout).
The Aces have won four straight games, and Liz Cambage has posted a double-double in each of the last five contests. She is averaging 21.8 points an 11.6 rebounds during that time, while connecting on 56.8 percent of her shots from the field. The 2018 WNBA MVP runner up now ranks eighth in the league in scoring (16.1 ppg), and fourth in rebounding (8.6).
A’ja Wilson returned to the Las Vegas lineup two games ago after missing eight games due to a left ankle sprain. She is averaging 22.5 points and 7.0 rebounds over those two games, and has gone to the free throw line 23 times.
Las Vegas has been known for its defensive prowess this season, but has slowly improved its offense, and now ranks third in the league in offensive efficiency (100.7 points per 100 possessions). The reasons for the improvement are a WNBA-leading free throw rate, and a decrease in the team’s turnover percentage, which now ranks fifth in the league.
The Aces still lead the W in Defensive Efficiency, Opponent Field Goal Percentage, and Defensive Rebound Percentage.
Connecticut has won three straight games entering the weekend, and is the top offensive rebounding team in the league. Jonquel Jones is the team’s top offensive threat averaging 14.8 points per game, and a league-leading 10.3 rebounds per game. Alyssa Thomas also ranks in the top 10 in the WNBA in rebounding (7.7 – 10th) and is averaging 11.0 points per game.
The Sun boast two other double-figure scorers in Courtney Williams (12.0 ppg) and Jasmine Thomas (11.8 ppg). Thomas is also fifth in the league in assists at 5.3 per game.
Defensively, Connecticut is allowing opponents to connect on 42.9 percent of their shots which is the fifth highest in the WNBA. The Sun also are the second best defensive rebounding team in the league, and force the fourth most turnovers per game.
The Aces and Sun split their two previous meetings this season, both of which took place at Mandalay Bay Events Center. Connecticut beat Las Vegas 80-74 in the Aces third game of the season, and the Aces exacted some revenge on August 11 in an 89-81 victory.