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What Dorka Juhász brings to UConn women’s basketball

The Huskies add depth to their frontcourt with an experienced forward.

NCAA Womens Basketball: Big Ten Conference Tournament: Michigan vs Ohio State. Thomas J. Russo-USA TODAY Sports

On Monday, UConn women’s basketball added Dorka Juhász, a 6-foot-4 graduate transfer from Ohio State, to its already-stacked roster. With the addition of Juhász heading into the 2021-22 season, the Huskies will have something their roster has been lacking for the past few seasons: Depth in the frontcourt.

Juhász averaged a double-double at Ohio State in her junior season and earned All-Big Ten First Team honors twice. She excels the most is on the glass, averaging 11.1 rebounds per game in 2020-21, up from just over nine in her first two seasons with the Buckeyes.

Her strength on the glass is evident on both ends of the floors. Last season she rebounded nearly 14 percent of Ohio State’s missed shots while on the floor and 22 percent of opponents’, both of which ranked in the top four percent of the nation.

On the offensive end, Juhász is at her best in the paint. She scored 1.23 points per possessions on post ups and possessions around the basket. Outside of the post, Juhász has struggled with her shooting, knocking her three point attempts at just a 20 percent clip this season — though she shot nearly 40 percent from deep as a sophomore.

Considering how bizarre the 2020-21 campaign was for every, especially considering Juhász missed time after testing positive for COVID-19 in January, her sophomore year could be more indicative of who she is as a player.

The biggest hole in her offensive game actually seems to be her free throw shooting, which has declined over her three years at Ohio State. Juhász shot just 42.9 percent from the line this season after making 53.2 percent last year and 62.9 percent as a freshman. For reference, Olivia Nelson-Ododa was UConn’s worst foul shooter in 2020-21 at 59.8 percent.

Juhász also demonstrated the ability to produce strong performances against other top post players in the Big Ten. She put up double-doubles in all three performances against Indiana’s Mackenzie Holmes and Iowa’s Monica Czinano. In the season’s first matchup against Michigan’s All-American Naz Hillmon, Juhász recorded 14 points and seven boards. She struggled to score in her second meeting with just one point but still recorded 12 rebounds.

That’s especially valuable for the Huskies considering Nelson-Ododa has often struggled throughout her career in big games with sub-par performances against Baylor her sophomore year as well as Arkansas and Arizona as a junior.

With Juhász, UConn adds an experienced and proven piece to its frontcourt. At a minimum, she should provide a strong option off the bench should Nelson-Ododa and/or Aaliyah Edwards get into foul trouble or struggle on a given night, and the Huskies can use her in the lineup without sacrificing size.

UConn has come a long way since the 2019-20 season when it didn’t have any post options behind Nelson-Ododa. Now, the Huskies have five players listed at 6-foot-3 or taller. With Juhász’s experience and proven success against tough competition, she has the potential to be an important part of UConn’s regular rotation.