NEW YORK — The Connecticut Sun continue to rise in the east.
Connecticut has been playing well since dropping its first four games of the season. The Sun have been getting it done at home and on the road, climbing to fourth in The Associated Press WNBA power poll Tuesday. It’s the highest ranking for the team since the poll began last season.
The Sun are getting stellar play from the Thomases.
Point guard Jasmine Thomas is having a career year as well as forward Alyssa Thomas. The forward has had at least eight assists in the team’s last four victories. Connecticut is also getting great production from center Jonquel Jones, who is having a breakout second year.
Jones is averaging a double-double and is currently in the top three in the All-Star voting for forwards. She has a chance to make the starting lineup when it’s announced next week.
Minnesota and Los Angeles are sure to have a few players in the All-Star Game on July 22. The top teams in the poll meet for the first time this season on Thursday.
POWER POLL: Minnesota and Los Angeles continue to lead the way. Here’s a look at this week’s WNBA poll.
1. Minnesota (12-1): After a big win in Phoenix, Minnesota has had plenty of time to prepare for the showdown with Los Angeles on Thursday.
2. Los Angeles (12-3): The Sparks capped a busy week with a victory over Washington. Los Angeles also won at Connecticut and at Atlanta to set up its game against Minnesota.
3. Washington (10-6): A long road swing got off to a rough start with loss at Los Angeles. The Mystics, who blew a 17-point lead in that game, will play four more road games before returning to Washington.
4. Connecticut (8-7): The Sun recovered from a tough loss to Los Angeles with wins over Seattle and Indiana.
5. Phoenix (7-6): The Mercury have a busy week with home games against Washington and New York sandwiched around a trip to San Antonio.
6. New York (7-7): The Liberty keeps falling into big holes, rallying from the huge deficits and falling short each time. New York has lost three straight and are on the road for a while longer.
7. Dallas (8-9): The Wings have missed coach Fred Williams the last two games. Williams has been ill and hopefully will return for the team’s home-and-home matchup with Atlanta — his former team.
8. Seattle (7-8): The Storm return to Seattle after a disappointing road trip for a five-game homestand.
9. Indiana (7-8): The Fever have just one game this week at Atlanta.
10. Atlanta (6-7): The Dream held on for a much-needed win over New York and now have a busy week with two games against Dallas and one against Indiana.
11. Chicago (3-12): Will be hard-pressed to end a three-game skid when they host Minnesota.
12. San Antonio (1-14): Stars won their first game of the season, beating Chicago. They will try and build off that victory against Connecticut and Phoenix.
GAME OF THE WEEK: Sparks at Lynx, Thursday. It’s the first meeting between the teams that squared off for last season’s WNBA championship. The Lynx have been playing with determination and focus this season after falling to the Sparks in five games. Los Angeles has won its last eight games.
HONORING TAURASI: The Phoenix Mercury pulled out all the stops to honor Taurasi for becoming the league’s all-time leading scorer, bringing in a herd of goats . Taurasi is on the short list for the greatest WNBA player of all-time.
PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Candace Parker, Sparks. Parker averaged 19.3 points, 10.7 rebounds, 3.7 assists to help Los Angeles go 3-0 this past week. Other players receiving votes included Isabelle Harrison and Elena Delle Donne.
To find the poll online: http://collegebasketball.ap.org/ap-wnba-power-poll-week-8
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