It was a first for Two-time WNBA MVP Elena Delle Donne and a first for WNBA’s winningest coach Mike Thibault— They are the recipients of the 2019 WNBA Championship.
With 21pts. and 9 Reb, Delle Donne fough through a herniated disk, the relentless offense and sharp shooting from Connecticut’s Jonquel Jones and Courtney Williams to beat the Connecticut Sun 89-78 in Washington, D.C.
“Every single person deserves this,” said Delle Donne. “A lot of people questioned why I went to a team who had never been in the playoff,” she added.
It is safe to say, there will be no more questions about that.
For most of the night, Washington and Connecticut played a seesaw match, as both teams took turns leading.
The first sign of a potential win for Washington came in the third quarter as Jones gave her fourth foul and took the bench. At that point, Delle Donne capitalized, making lay-ups, jumpers and even drawing fouls in the paint.
Coach Thibault told journalists that that was key to garnering a win.
“It was a big deal to get Jonquel out of the game.” he said, as he was fielded questions by reporters.
The largest lead didn’t come until the 4th quarter with 2:45 left on the shot clock. An unwavering Emma Messeman, the WNBA MVP of the series, who wrapped the game with 18 pts, sunk a jumper. Christy Toliver also frustrated Connecticut by often taking open shots, driving to the basket and defensively stopping their runs.
Asked what she whispered to Thiabault after the final buzzer, Delle Donne chuckled then mentioned a line from a Rod Stewart hit song.
” I said to him, ‘have I told you lately that I love you?”
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