A’ja Wilson played back half of the year injured, still dominated

South Carolina basketball legend Aja Wilson. Mandatory Credit: Lucas Peltier-USA TODAY Sports
South Carolina basketball legend Aja Wilson. Mandatory Credit: Lucas Peltier-USA TODAY Sports /

Former South Carolina basketball star Aja Wilson is the best player in the entire WNBA, and she and her Las Vegas Aces squad had just one loss in the entire postseason on their way to their second-straight WNBA championship.

For reasons that don’t make sense to anyone who actually follows the sport, Aja Wilson finished third in WNBA MVP voting behind New York Liberty star Breanna Stewart and Alyssa Thomas of the Connecticut Sun.

Wilson rightfully won the Defensive Player of the Year award, but she admitted that “it hurt” and was frustrating not winning the MVP when she was the league’s top player on the season. Wilson and her teammates took out that frustration on the rest of the league in the playoffs.

In nine WNBA Postseason games, Aja Wilson put up 6 double-doubles while averaging 23.8 points per game, 11.8 rebounds per night, and 2.3 blocks per contest. She outpaced Stewart (who played 10 games in the playoffs) in points, rebounds, blocks, and steals while outshooting her 55.4%/50%/83.1% to 35.8%/19.6%/87.2% (FG%/3P%/FT%).

As it turns out, Wilson’s dominance came despite the fact that she was dealing with injuries.

As she was sporting a brand new cast on her shooting hand during the Aces’ championship parade, questions started arising about Aja Wilson’s health. This week, her teammate Kelsey Plum answered what was up with Wilson’s cast:

Wilson played the second half of the season with a sprained thumb and sprained wrist on her shooting hand.

For a basketball player, other than a serious leg injury that keeps one from being able to run and jump, issues to a player’s primary wrist and thumb are about as debilitating as possible. Yet, Wilson dominated anyway.

If anyone doubted Aja Wilson’s place among the all-time greats in women’s basketball history, this postseason should have served as an education to their ignorance. Aja Wilson is already one of the best players ever, and she is still in her prime with many more years to play.

Related Story. South Carolina Basketball coach Dawn Staley comes to Aja Wilson's defense in wake of MVP snub. light