The Liberty reportedly moved one step closer to running it back in the 2024 season.
Center Jonquel Jones intends to re-sign with the Liberty after receiving significant interest across the league, according to The Next Hoop’s Jackie Powell.
The news of the re-signing comes months after the 2021 MVP said she’s “definitely trending towards coming back here,” when asked about her possible return to New York. Liberty GM Jonathan Kolb said during his exit interview in October that Jones is “a player we definitely want to retain.”
Jones was the Liberty’s most consistent player in the postseason. She contributed 16.8 points, 11.6 rebounds and 2.4 blocks in the playoffs. The former Connecticut Sun averaged 11.3 points, 8.4 rebounds and 1.3 blocks while appearing in every regular season game for the Liberty in 2023.
The 30-year-old initially landed in New York last offseason after the Sun traded her to the Liberty in exchange for forward Rebecca Allen and draft compensation. The three-team deal — which included the Dallas Wings — also brought Kayla Thornton to the Liberty.
Jones hopes to be a full participant in the team’s training camp in 2024 after missing time in last year’s camp due to a foot injury. The injury was sustained as a member of the Sun during the 2022 postseason. Jones getting acclimated to her new team while returning from the injury attributed to a slow start with the Liberty last season. She failed to score in double-digits in three of her first eight games with the team and didn’t record her first double-double until the 10th game of the season.
After hitting her stride, Jones looked like her dominant self for the Liberty. She was awarded the 2023 Commissioner’s Cup MVP Award after recording 16 points and 15 boards in the 82-63 victory over the Las Vegas Aces at Michelob Ultra Arena. The center recorded nine double-doubles after the All-Star Break, including a stretch of four consecutive games during that period.
The Liberty still have one more star to re-sign. Breanna Stewart, the 2023 MVP, was cored by the team, which makes her ineligible to test free agency this winter. Kolb will be busy during the WNBA Draft in April, with the team currently owning four total picks (No. 11, No. 17, No. 23, and No. 35).