Las Vegas Aces
Photo Credit: Las Vegas Aces

FSM Presents: Las Vegas Aces 2021 Season Preview: Emma Cannon

Franchise Sports Media


FSM’s Cole Huff continues with our Las Vegas Aces coverage for the 2021 season with part 2 of his player preview series. This week’s focus is on forward Emma Cannon.



Emma Cannon Bio:


Measurements: 6’2; 190 lbs

Age: 31

Position: Forward

Years Pro: 3 (Cannon has played professionally in international competition since 2011, but this will be her third season in the WNBA)

Season Stats: 2020 → 0 points, 0 rebounds, 0 assists on 0/ 0/ 0 shooting splits. (Cannon logged just 24 seconds in the final regular-season game)

Playoff Stats: 2020 → 3.8 points, 2.2 rebounds, 0.8 assists on 50.0/ 20.0/ 0.0 shooting splits




When the Las Vegas Aces signed Emma Cannon, she was signed to a rest of the season contract on September 9th, and, after quarantining, she made her lone regular-season appearance for the team on September 13th. Cannon earned extended postseason minutes during the “wubble” after teammate Dearica Hamby’s season was cut short due to a knee injury. She filled in nicely over the team’s six playoff games and fulfilled her purpose as a serviceable veteran role player. The Aces rewarded Cannon’s play this offseason as the Aces re-signed her for the 2021 WNBA season




Emma Cannon 4
Photo Credit: Las Vagas Aces

When speaking of Cannon’s strengths, well, you must first speak of that exactly — her literal physical style of play. The veteran forward is no stranger to muscling up, which is a trait you’d have to believe head coach Bill Laimbeer admires greatly. While she is not a defensive stopper by any means, she offers an additional physical body to situationally throw at opposing players who like to operate near the rim.

For instance, she wasn’t a long-term solution for guarding Alyssa Thomas during the 2020 WNBA Semifinals. Still, she was able to match Thomas’s physicality on occasion, easing the defensive workload and conserving energy for WNBA MVP Aja Wilson.

Cannon’s physicality translates to the other end of the court as well. She won’t necessarily do much with the ball in her hands, but she puts in work without it. Cannon used her strength to clear space down low and battle for offensive rebounds in her six playoff games last season. In fact, 6 of her 13 total rebounds came on the offensive glass. Those numbers may not jump off the page, but these are the type of plays that’ll win over her coaches and teammates.




Emma Cannon
Photo Credit: Las Vegas Aces

While Cannon is best utilized as a physical defender, the league is trending the other direction from an offensive standpoint. The game has become more finesse; fours and fives are moving farther away from the rim, becoming more mobile and versatile as the game changes. Unfortunately for Cannon, this is an area that gives her some trouble. As the off-ball defender, Cannon struggles to recover from the help positions out to perimeter shooters in time to make an impact on their shot, and when she does recover, it’s often a short closeout in fear of getting dribbled by. 

A similar comparison can be made to when she is the on-ball defender. Her foot speed lacks and isn’t ideal for containing outside-in fours, hence her struggles in the 2020 WNBA Finals guarding Breanna Stewart — although, to be fair, she presents those struggles to all other defenders. 






Emma Cannon 3
Photo Credit: Las Vegas Aces

Cannon was courted to serve as the Aces’ insurance signing last postseason. Once Hamby went out with injury, and Carolyns Sword was the only other big to pair with Aja Wilson, emergency minutes turned into a consistent 14-minute per-game role for Cannon. She did fine for what was asked of her and even tied a career-high for points (17) and field goals made (8) during game 2 of the finals. That said, Hamby will come into the season injury-free, Wilson will likely lead the team in minutes again, and recently re-signed all-star center Liz Cambage will return to the starting lineup after having opted out of the 2020 season. 





With those three decorated women at full strength, Cannon is likely to fight for minutes with teammate JiSu Park as the fourth big.    

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-Cole Huff– Franchise Sports Media

Follow Cole on Twitter @ColeHoops

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