The Connecticut Sun announced Tuesday that they were re-signing free-agent forward Alyssa Thomas despite the recent Achilles tendon injury that is expected to keep her out all of this coming WNBA season.
"I'm feeling pretty good, almost two weeks out of surgery now," said Thomas, who was injured during a practice while playing for her overseas team in the Czech Republic. "For me, it was about coming back [to the Sun] and finishing what we've already started."
Thomas has played seven seasons for the Sun, leading them to the WNBA Finals in 2019. Last season, she averaged 15.5 points, 9.0 rebounds and 4.8 assists. She signed a multiyear deal to stay.
"It was important to show our loyalty for all that Alyssa Thomas has done for our franchise," Sun coach and general manager Curt Miller said. "AT has established herself as one of the premier players in the world. We know she will return from this setback better than ever."
Thomas has played with labral tears in her shoulders for several years, and she said she did not intend to have those issues addressed surgically during her time away because of the Achilles injury.
"I think that's too much; right now I'm focused on this injury," Thomas said. "Clearly, I'm able to play with my shoulders, I've been doing it for years. And I'm going to continue playing the way that I play."
WNBA players could sign with teams beginning Monday. In other signings on Tuesday:
Guard/forward Betnijah Laney, who was WNBA Most Improved Player last season with Atlanta, signed a multiyear deal with the New York Liberty. She averaged 17.2 PPG and 4.9 RPG in her lone season with the Dream.
Washington announced that forward/center LaToya Sanders will rejoin the team this coming season. She didn't compete in 2020 because of health concerns but was a starter for the 2019 championship team.
Los Angeles announced the signing of guard Erica Wheeler to a multiyear deal. A starter for Indiana from 2016-19, she was the WNBA All-Star Game MVP in 2019 -- the first undrafted player to earn that honor. Wheeler did not play last season because of COVID-19 concerns.