NBA

Sparks acquire Jasmine Thomas, No. 10 overall pick from Sun in exchange for three players

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Jasmine Thomas will reunite with Curt Miller in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Adam Hunger)
Jasmine Thomas will reunite with Curt Miller in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Adam Hunger)

Jasmine Thomas is reuniting with her former coach. Thomas — along with the No. 10 overall pick — was traded from the Connecticut Sun to the Los Angeles Sparks on Monday in exchange for three players, the Sparks announced.

The move reunites Thomas with Sparks head coach Curt Miller, who spent the last seven seasons coaching the Sun. Miller joined the Sparks in October.

Thomas, 33, was limited to just five games last season due to a torn ACL. She averaged 6.6 points, 3.0 assists and 2.2 rebounds per contest. In her previous six seasons, all under Miller, Thomas averaged 11.9 points and 6.0 assists per game.

Miller credited Thomas’ knowledge of the game and ability on both ends of the floor as a reason Miller will fit in with the Sparks, per the team release.

“I have had the pleasure of coaching Jasmine for my entire professional head coaching career and know she will be an incredible addition to this team and the culture we are building in LA,” said Sparks Head Coach Curt Miller. “Her knowledge of the game and her ability to lead a team both on the offensive and defensive ends of the floor is something that will be invaluable to us.”

The Sun reached the WNBA Finals without Thomas last season, where the team fell to the Las Vegas Aces 3-1.

Sun continue to tear it down after WNBA Finals appearance

The Sun received center Olivia Nelson-Ododa, Jasmine Walker and the reserved rights to Kianna Smith in the deal. Nelson-Ododa and Smith were drafted by the Sparks in 2022. Walker was drafted by Los Angeles in 2021. Nelso-Ododa has experienced the most success of that trio, averaging 4.0 points and 2.9 rebounds over 30 games.

The move sends yet another signal the Sun will rebuild after losing in the WNBA Finals. The team also traded 2021 MVP Jonquel Jones this offseason, sending her to the New York Liberty on Sunday.

By tearing down now, the Sun could be angling for a high pick in the 2024 WNBA Draft. Iowa’s Caitlin Clark and UConn’s Paige Bueckers are expected to be the biggest names available, and could help the Sun get back on track if the team falters during the 2023 WNBA season.



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