Sports

Jones named WNBA Player of the Month for August

The writing might just be on the wall.

Bahamian women’s professional basketball player Jonquel “JJ” Jones won her second of three player of the month awards this season, and the third of her career, in the Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA) on Thursday, as she led the Connecticut Sun to a perfect record in August.

Jones, who has been completely dominant this season, averaged 18.7 points, 11 rebounds and one block per game to be named as the Kia WNBA Eastern Conference Player of the Month for August. It’s her second such award this season, and could be the prelude to a Most Valuable Player (MVP) Award at season’s end. She’s one of the favorites for that season-ending award.

In addition to the two player of the month awards, Jones has won three of the 10 player of the week awards in the Eastern Conference of the WNBA this season.

The Sun have a league-leading 21-6 win/loss record, a game and a half in front of the second-place Las Vegas Aces (19-7) who they have swept in three games this season. Additionally, they won all seven of their games in August, and have won nine regular season games in a row dating back to the beginning of July.

Jones, 27, is the only player in the league to win multiple player of the month awards this season, and one of just three players to win three player of the week awards. The other two are Breanna Stewart of the Seattle Storm and Brittney Griner of the Phoenix Mercury.

For the season, Jones is averaging 20.3 points, 11 rebounds and 1.4 steals per game – top 10 in the league in all three – to go along with 2.7 assists and 1.1 blocks per game. She is third scoring, leads the way in rebounding and in a three-way tie for seventh in steals. Jones is also third in the league in Fantasy Points per game at 42, trailing just the Washington Mystics’ Tina Charles at 43.4 and the Storm’s Stewart, also at 43.4. The 6’6” 202-pound post player for the Sun is shooting 53.1 percent from the field and 38.3 percent from distance. She is averaging a career-high 1.6 made three point shots per game. In fact, she is averaging almost career-high numbers in a number of categories – in points, assists and steals.

Just this past Tuesday, Jones matched her regular season career-high with 31 points on 12-of-17 shooting, leading the Sun past the Mystics, 85-75, on the road – at the Entertainment & Sports Arena in Washington, DC. Jones was also huge on the boards that game as she finished with a game-high 14 rebounds and added three blocks and two steals.

She scored 21 of her 31 points in the first half, which was a career-high for points in a half for her.

Sylvia Fowles of the Minnesota Lynx won the Kia WNBA Western Conference Player of the Month for August, averaging 19.2 points, 10.6 rebounds and 1.6 blocks per game for August, and leading the Lynx to a 4-2 record for the month.

Jones and Fowles are the only two players in the league averaging a double-double for the season. Jones has a league-leading 14 double-doubles this season. 

Jones leads the Sun in four of the five main statistic categories – points, rebounds, steals and blocks, making her the only player to lead her team in four of the five main categories. She’s arguably the league’s most dominant player.

Jones is a three-time WNBA All-Star, a two-time All-WNBA team member, an All-Defensive First Team member, and won the league’s most improved player and sixth woman of the year awards.

Jones and the Sun are poised to wrap up the league’s best record. They have just one game remaining against a team with a record above .500 – the Mercury who they play on the road at the Footprint Center in Phoenix, Arizona, on Saturday September 11. That game will bring their four-game road trip to an end, and then they will end the regular season with two games at home at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Connecticut – against the New York Liberty and the Atlanta Dream.

In their next game, the Sun will travel to Arlington, Texas, to face the Dallas Wings at the College Park Center in Arlington on Tuesday September 7.

Jump Line – In their next game, the Sun will travel to Arlington, Texas, to face the Dallas Wings on September 7

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Sheldon Longley

Sheldon Longley joined The Nassau Guardian in January 2001 as a sports reporter. He was promoted to sports editor in 2008. Sheldon has an extensive background in sports reporting. He covered three Olympic Games and three world championships, along with multiple smaller regional and local games.

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