Game Preview: Las Vegas Aces at Connecticut Sun

Game preview of the Aces' season opener vs. the Connecticut Sun.

Sunday, May 20, 2010

1:00 pm ET

Twitter (live stream)

It’s a night of firsts: the newest (kinda) WNBA franchise, the Las Vegas Aces, plays its first regular season game, which will be the first WNBA game streamed live on Twitter. For a league that has proven technology-adverse in the past (hi, Laurel Richie), this is real progress.

The Aces exit the preseason 1-1 after a win over the China national team and a blowout loss by the Dallas Wings.  The Sun are 3-0 in the preseason against the Los Angeles Sparks, the Wings, and the Atlanta Dream.

With heralded rookie A’ja Wilson making her regular season debut and the Sun’s Chiney Ogwumike returning from injury, here’s what we can look forward to:

Disclaimer: These are possible matchups and are subject to change before tip-off. The Aces roster is taken from the official team website. The WNBA is moving away from traditional position labels (e.g., small forward, power forward) and simply using "guard", "forward", and "center". 

Matchups

Guard: Shoni Schimmel (Aces) vs. Alex Bentley (Sun)

Guard: Moriah Jefferson (Aces) vs. Jasmine Thomas (Sun)

Forward: Tamera Young (Aces) vs. Shekinnah Stricklen (Sun)

Forward: A'Ja Wilson (Aces) vs. Chiney Ogwumike (Sun)

Center: Carolyn Swords (Aces)  vs. Jonquel Jones (Sun)

Must-see TV

The Wilson/Ogwumike matchup. Ogwumike is making her return to the WNBA after sitting out last season with injury (and scoring a full-time ESPN analyst gig in the process), Wilson, who looked comfortable in the preseason, is about to be tested against one of the best players in the league and a former MVP. Ogwumike will probably come out on top in this contest, but Wilson will make her work for the win.

X-Factors

With a new name, new location, and new names on the roster, team cohesion will be the main thing to look for with the Aces (especially with Kelsey Plum and Kayla McBride still playing overseas). In an unforeseen twist, center Isabelle Harrison will be sitting out the season due to personal health reasons; she did not attend training camp. The shorthanded Aces will need to work extra hard just to maintain against a high-caliber team like the Sun. But if rookies Jamie Nared and Ji-Su Park get some running time and heat up, things could get very interesting.

Talented Sun youngsters Morgan Tuck (fresh off her debut with the USA Women’s National Basketball Team) and rookie Lexi Brown (ninth overall pick in the 2018 draft) can help tip the scales for a predominately veteran team with a mostly returning cast.

In Other News

Aces veteran Dearica Hamby returned from her overseas stint with Italian club Ragusa, just in time for the team's season opener. She may come off the bench while she gets acclimated to all of the newness.

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