Aari Mcdonald is taking the WNBL by storm

There's something about Aari.

Speedy, smart and averaging a league-high 27 points per game, she's the catalyst behind Perth Lynx's undefeated start to the season.

She's Aari McDonald.

The Lynx have had great success recruiting WNBA players who have made a big splash in recent WNBL seasons.

In a Grand Final campaign in 2021-22, it was sharpshooter Marina Mabrey (Chicago Sky) and Jackie Young who would go on to win back-to-back championships with Las Vegas Aces after her Aussie sting and now coach Ryan Petrik's found another one in the Californian-born guard from the Atlanta Dream.

Nobody can keep up with the 2021 No.3 draft pick, not even the broadcast cameras at the preseason tournament in Brisbane who McDonald left for dust as she zipped down the floor in the opening game.

"My speed is a huge weapon. I think my biggest asset is my quickness. I'm not the tallest, I'm not the strongest but I know that my speed is always going to take me places, take me further," she said ahead of ESPN's game of the round between Perth and Southside in Melbourne on Wednesday night.

"That's how I feel I'm taking the league. I'm kind of hard to guard, I'm always trying to watch my body and maintain my speed.

"And I love the way that Coach Ryan has us playing. Pace is number 1 and pace is a big thing especially having a point guard like me. I knew I was going to feel comfortable because it feels like my Arizona college team. It may be chaotic but OK who's going to keep up with us?

"Making sure we're always fast paced and having me as decision maker feels good."

And while McDonald, 25, wants to help Perth be successful, she is also getting to work on her own game.

"I want to get better, work on my leadership and be more vocal because I know I struggle with that, I'm quiet. Take care of the ball, I just want to be better in all aspects, even my strength. I want to sharpen that, I want to go back to the WNBA finetuned," she said.

"I'm working on my game, but I want to make sure my Perth team mates are getting better and hopefully win a championship out here.

Someone who helps with the fine tuning is Opals assistant coach Paul Goriss who is also assistant at Atlanta and this season with Canberra in the WNBL.

A familiar face in a new country, just a call away.

"I love Paulie. He's full of energy, we vibe, we talk about shoes, we talk about coffee," she said.

"He's always positive. It's very helpful having him here, even though he coaches another team in the league he always checks in on me, he's watching me, telling me how to get better and gives me the confidence I need."

McDonald is happy and settled in WA with husband Devon Brewer.

Teenage sweethearts, they met at the University of Arizona where he was a footballer, discovering they hailed from the same city, Fresno.

Brewer's taken leave from his job to join his wife on the other side of the world.

While she's organising the Lynx, he's 'turned into a beach boy' and hits the court once a week himself in a pick-up game with teammate Chloe Forster's boyfriend.

In 2021, McDonald completed her college career, achieved her WNBA draft dream then took up her first pro contract in Hungary.

She was home sick and struggled.

"It was during Covid and there was burnout for me," she explained.

"My confidence was really shot, it was hard. I found myself in a different culture, there was a language barrier and I wasn't able to perform. My husband wasn't there, I wasn't able to produce and play well for my team.

"He's made a sacrifice to come out here and make sure I'm comfortable. I'm able to sleep, be in a calm state of mind, having him in the stands for the games is really big."

McDonald hopes to contribute to team success, first here then back in the WNBA.

"My number one [goal] is to win a WNBA championship. I want to became an All-Star, I want to win 'most improved', I want to lead the league in steals and assists," she said.

"My goals are big and I think I can achieve them but I need to keep working and be a great team mate as well as being a great player. Oh, and I'm hoping Jackie Young rubs off on me."