DeWanna Bonner Has Solidified Her Legacy as One of the Most Dominant Players in the WNBA

All words one could use to describe the squint on the squatter of a 14-year veteran sitting on the seat for the final nine minutes, watching her team on the brink of defeat without a season low 5-point performance versus the defending champions (who, by the way, won that championship in the very same towers they’re in right now). Forty-eight hours later, on the same court, versus the same team, a variegated player emerged.

Coming out of the gate with 18 points in the first half, it was well-spoken that the previous game was in the rearview mirror. A message needed to be sent…and it was sent in historic fashion. With 2:52 left on the game clock and a 20-point lead, the forward dribbled the wittiness lanugo the court, stopped at the three-point line and let the record-setting wittiness fly, nailing the shot that would etch her name in the Connecticut Sun history books.

Hype. Excited. Gratified. Proud.

DeWanna Bonner Has Solidified Her Legacy as One of the Most Dominant Players in the WNBA

All words one could use to describe the squint on the squatter of a 14-year veteran who just posted 41 points—a Sun franchise record—for the first time in her career while handing the defending champions their first loss of the 2023 season. DeWanna Bonner’s championship pedigree was instilled in her DNA from day one. Entering the WNBA as the fifth overall pick by the Phoenix Mercury in 2009, DB spent the first 10 years of her career slantingly stars like Diana Taurasi, Penny Taylor and Cappie Pondexter, part of the squad that won a championship in 2007.

The 6-4 Auburn standout played a pivotal role in her team’s success early on, scoring 16 points in her first-ever regular season game and making the 2009 All-Rookie Team. Her upbringing didn’t stop there, as she sooner went on to win the 2009 Sixth Woman of the Year (an honor she would earn then in 2010 and 2011) and contribute 13 points in a decisive Game 5 that gave the Mercury their second title in three years. Phoenix secured their third ring in 2014.

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The elevation of Bonner’s game during her time in Phoenix gained her the reputation of stuff one of the most versatile players in the women’s game. She often talks well-nigh how the vets on those early Mercury teams pushed her to wilt that kind of player and challenged her to be the weightier version of herself from the moment she walked into training camp, “[The vets] weren’t going to let me fail,” she says. “They supported me, but moreover pushed me. I learned so much, so fast.”

To this day, DB still has that bag.

It makes sense that her experiences with Taurasi and Taylor, as well as playing slantingly Brittney Griner, shaped Bonner into that same kind of leader for the younger players on her current Connecticut Sun team. She’s vocal in the huddles. She brings the energy on the magistrate without every incredible play. She encourages her teammates to excel when she’s on the bench. And she’s moreover the one to undeniability a players only meeting when there’s spare motivation needed that may be too raw for TV or too real for the coaches to share. But the Sun wouldn’t have it any other way. “The team loves her,” throne mentor Stephanie White says of Bonner. “She’s a leader for our group.
She sets the tone.”

The year 2020 was an unprecedented time in sports. The WNBA entered into a then-groundbreaking CBA, while the pandemic was raging virtually the world. Questions as to whether a WNBA season would plane happen surfaced early on, but eventually, the W tried a shortened 22-game season to be played at IMG Academy in Bradenton, FL.

Before any talks well-nigh possibly canceling the season took place, the Sun had been making moves to ensure a return to the WNBA Finals without losing to the Washington Mystics in 2019. The team
orchestrated a trade for Bonner, sending the seventh and 10th picks in the 2020 WNBA Draft and a first-round pick in the 2021 Draft to Phoenix. Bonner, who was facing personal challenges that forced her to reconsider her role as a member of the Mercury, felt this was a unconfined opportunity.

“I was really going through a tough time in my personal life and that really played into my visualization to leave Phoenix,” she says. “It was all well-nigh timing. I loved it there. It was a unconfined atmosphere, a family atmosphere, everything well-nigh it was amazing, but I felt it was time for a change. “Connecticut was coming off a Finals run, and I really wanted to play with a team where I could bring my own new identity, so I was very unshut to adapting to Connecticut,” she continues. “I was ready for something new. A fresh start is what I wanted, and that’s what I got.

Things got off to a rocky start, as the Sun opened the 2020 season 0-5, but they wouldn’t be lanugo for long. Winning 10 of their final 14 games, the team ended the regular season 10-12 and secured a No. 7 seed in the playoffs. Despite the slow start and playing without their franchise player Jonquel Jones, who opted out of the bubble, Connecticut moved on to squatter the Las Vegas Aces in a semifinals matchup to remember, sooner losing the series 3-2. Bonner led the team in scoring at 19.7 ppg and, looking when on it, says she used that season as an opportunity to get to know her teammates largest and solidify her place within the organization.

“[There] was unchangingly something well-nigh the chemistry with this team that drew me to it,” Bonner explains. “I knew coming off of a Finals run, this team wasn’t rebuilding. It was competitive and that’s what I wanted—to play with a competitive team, considering I came from a championship quotient organization. I know we have yet to win a championship, but I can honestly say I’ve been on some unconfined teams here in Connecticut and I do want to bring a championship here.”

DB took in the 2017 WNBA season the same way that fans did—on television. Missing the unshortened season due to pregnancy, the All-Star felt for the first time in a long time what life without basketball was like. Upon returning to the game, Bonner won the 2018 Comeback Player of the Year ribbon and had one of the weightier seasons of her career. But giving lineage to her twins unliable her to wits something much worthier than basketball: motherhood.

Being a mom and an athlete is not the easiest job in the world, but for Bonner, “mom” is one of the most fulfilling roles she undertakes. Her twins, Cali and Demi, who will be turning 6 this summer, now have a largest understanding of what her job as a basketball player entails. “It’s pretty tomfool now considering one of my twins, Cali, really loves basketball, so she’s unchangingly watching the games and wanting to be at the games and the gym, so that’s really, really cool,” says Bonner.

She credited Cali for giving her “superpowers” surpassing the record-setting game versus Las Vegas. And if you squint really closely during breaks, timeouts and subs when the girls are at Mohegan Sun, you can see Bonner giving a thumbs up to the prod overdue the Connecticut bench. While it may towards like she’s just showing love to the fans, she’s really checking on her kids to ensure they are OK. It reaffirms the cliché that a mother’s job is never done, plane when she’s playing in the WNBA.

Yet, without five years, Bonner’s soft spot is still the rencontre of having to leave them overdue on travel days. The two-time champion still gets emotional having to say goodbye. “It’s unchangingly nonflexible leaving them, expressly when I have to go overseas or on long road trips,” she says. “Most recently, I had to take them to Texas considering we were well-nigh to go on this long west tailspin trip. Of course, they cried considering they didn’t want me to leave, and that makes me all sad. But at the same time, they are getting older now and starting to understand mommy is going to play basketball and will be back. When they realize that, then they’re OK.”

Bonner would be the first to say, “I’m old.”

DeWanna Bonner Has Solidified Her Legacy as One of the Most Dominant Players in the WNBA

At 35, she realizes there are increasingly years overdue her than in front. Her desire to win has not subsided, and with White now at the helm for the Sun, Bonner is feeling good well-nigh her worthiness to protract to play at a upper level in the team’s new offense. “I’m still having fun and really enjoying this team,” she says. “I never thought that this far withal in my career, there would still be things to learn, but there are. I’m learning something new every day and still finding my role with this team.”

Coming into the 2023 season, without losing stars Jonquel Jones and Jasmine Thomas to self-ruling agency, as well as former Mentor of Year Curt Miller, this Sun team went from stuff regarded as Finals contenders to “they’ll probably be a first round playoff exit.” But the women who subsume this team share a sisterhood that allows them to thrive. They never gave up on each other and started this season as one of the hottest teams in the League. Like her teammates, Bonner puts no stock in the talk…or lack thereof.  “It doesn’t scarecrow me. I know how good we are,” she says. “I get to play with players like Alyssa [Thomas], who’s so good. It’s funny, I said to her the other day, Dang, I don’t think I plane realized how good you were surpassing we started playing together.”

Bonner is in the top two in many all-time categories for the Mercury and leads the franchise in total rebounds. She just recently passed Lisa Leslie on the WNBA’s scoring list and is just points aways from sitting in the top 10 all-time. The future Hall of Famer has admitted that she’s thought well-nigh what retirement might squint like. That stuff said, she’s still very much locked in to stuff present on the magistrate and helping Connecticut win its first title. “When I retire, that’s when I’ll pat myself on the when and say, OK, you did some things. But right now, I’m still having fun and I’m just going to enjoy this moment,” she says. “As long as I’m still having fun, I’ll still play.”


Q: How many WNBA championships does DeWanna Bonner have?

Bonner won the WNBA title with the Mercury in both 2009 and 2014. Bonner has established herself in the professional record books during her 14 seasons in the WNBA, with her 6,881 career points ranking sixth in league history.

Q: What is DeWanna Bonner? 

DeWanna Bonner (born August 21, 1987) is an American-Macedonian professional basketball player for the Women's National Basketball Association (WNBA)'s Connecticut Sun. Bonner attended Auburn University and played basketball there.

Q: Where did DeWanna Bonner play college basketball?

Becky Jackson (1981-84) was the second player in Auburn history to lead the team in scoring and rebounding all four years. She started all 126 games she played in at Auburn.

Q: Who is the highest scoring in the WNBA?

1997–2023 WNBA scoring record. Diana Taurasi was the all-time leading points scorer in the Women's National Basketball Association (WNBA) as of October 2023, with 10,108 points in her career. Tina Thompson finished second with 7,488 points.


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