By RENALDO DORSETT
Tribune Sports Reporter
BAHAMIAN basketball fans will have even more opportunities to see Jonquel Jones and the Connecticut Sun live in action this season through social media outlets.
The WNBA announced yesterday 20 games that will be live streamed on Twitter during the 2018 season as the social media app returns for its second consecutive season of live game coverage.
Three of the 20 games will feature Jones and the Sun.
The Sun will be in the first game broadcasted live on Twitter when the regular season commences on Sunday, May 20. They will face the Las Vegas Aces at 1pm. Their other Twitter broadcasts will be against the Dallas Wings, August 14 at 7pm, followed by the finale against the Los Angeles Sparks, August 19 at 3pm.
Twitter’s four-game schedule on May 20 helps headline #WNBAAllDay, when all 12 teams will be in action as part of WNBA Tip-Off 2018 presented by Verizon. Every WNBA team will make at least two game appearances on Twitter during the league’s 22nd season. In addition to Twitter, WNBA games can be seen on ESPN2, NBA TV, WNBA League Pass and the ESPN App this season.
During its inaugural season on Twitter, the WNBA averaged 613,000 unique viewers per game for its 20-game schedule.
The Sun will open the 2018 season by hosting a two-day preseason event involving the Dallas Wings, New York Liberty and Los Angeles Sparks at Mohegan Sun Arena May 7-8.
The Sun will close out the preseason on Friday, May 11, hosting the Atlanta Dream at 7pm in Webster Bank Arena in Bridgeport.
Jones comes off a successful offseason where she led her Shanxi Xing Rui Flame to a runners-up finish in the Women’s Chinese Basketball Association. Jones ended the regular season averaging a team-high 29.3 points, 18.8 rebounds and 2.9 assists over 31 games.
The 2017 season was one full of milestones for Jones and the Sun. The second-year forward was named to the All-WNBA Second Team after she averaged a double double, set the league’s single season rebounds total, was named an All-Star and was awarded as the WNBA’s Most Improved Player.
Jones finished the year averaging 15.5 points and 11.9 rebounds per game - a dramatic increase from her rookie season when she averaged 6.8 points and 3.7 rebounds per game.
Her record-setting total was 403 rebounds for the season. She also added 20 double doubles.
The Sparks finished the regular season with a record of 26-8, and the league’s top mark of 16-1 at home.
Jones’ historic season included several individual milestones, including becoming just the second player in league history to record three 20-rebound games in a single season.
Expectations will be even higher for both Jones and her team headed into the 2018-19 season.
“The main thing this year is I’m just really comfortable in my position, comfortable with my teammates,” she said. “We’re really excited about our growth as a team in general. From the first time when I came to Connecticut to what we’ve been able to do last year so we’re coming into it ready to meet the expectations and to go above and beyond.”