After 10 seasons with the Phoenix Mercury, DeWanna Bonner didn’t know what to expect. An unrestricted free agent for the first time in her career, she was free to choose her WNBA destination in 2020.
She wasn’t sure what teams would call. A few? A lot?
She heard from ALL of them.
“It was a bit overwhelming at first,” said Bonner. “But it definitely was nice to know that so many people at different teams thought I could come in and help them.”
“Help them” is an understatement. It’s not surprising that Bonner was the prize free agent this offseason. A three-time WNBA All-Star and two-time WNBA Champion, she’s one of the most versatile players in the league, with the size, length and ability to play multiple positions. The 6-4 guard/forward holds career averages of 14.4 points, 6.2 rebounds and 2.1 assists. She’s the all-time leader in rebounds in Mercury franchise history (2,072) and second on the organization’s scoring list (4,820) behind only Diana Taurasi.
Last season, Bonner tallied 17.2 points and snagged 7.6 rebounds, her best season on the glass in her decorated career.
Bonner, who wanted to make a decision quickly about her future, narrowed her list. The Sun made the cut.
“Connecticut has such a talented roster. I watched them get so close to winning a championship last season and was just really impressed with how hard they played. You could see how well they gelled on the court. I love their style of play and thought my game would be a good fit in their system,” Bonner stated.
With Bonner, the Sun’s All-Star frontcourt duo of Jonquel Jones and Alyssa Thomas is arguably the most formidable 3-4-5 trio in the WNBA.
“JJ is an amazing player. To be her size and step out and hit the three like she does…she’s such a tough match-up,” said Bonner. “And there is no one like AT. When she grabs a rebound and takes off, it’s like a train coming at you. I’m glad to finally be on the other side of that!”
Bonner’s praise didn’t stop with Jones and Alyssa Thomas though. Her admiration for her soon-to-be teammates went beyond the All-Star tandem.
“Jas doesn’t get the recognition she deserves. I would say she’s the best defensive point guard in the league and has become a scary offensive threat as well,” said Bonner. “Bria (Holmes) really came on too. I know what it’s like coming back after taking a year off to have a baby. What she did was impressive and I think she’ll take another step forward this year for us. And being reunited with Bri (January) was an unexpected surprise. She’s such a fierce competitor.”
The mother of two twin girls – Cali and Demi – Bonner wanted to ensure a great set-up for her family as well.
“Amber (Cox) and I have remained close from our days together in Phoenix and I immediately hit it off with Curt. Hearing about how much the (Mohegan) Tribe and leadership supports the team is great. They had everything laid out for me in terms of daycare options for my girls and sold me on the living arrangements. I was excited to hear that we’re so close to the beach,” exclaimed Bonner.
Comfortable with her new set-up off the court, Bonner can now focus on one thing as she joins the Sun in this summer and that’s bringing the franchise its first WNBA Championship.
“I’ve been in this league a long time so I have obviously played at Mohegan Sun a lot. The stands are always full. They support their team. There is no greater feeling than winning a championship. I was lucky to do that twice in my time in Phoenix and I’m hopeful we can finally hang a banner for this fan base and franchise as well. They deserve it.”