Sunday marked the first day of the WNBA Finals, two days after the Mercury were able to get in by upsetting the Las Vegas Aces on the road in Game 5. The postseason has been full of surprises and more clearly stated, given that #5 and #6 are the only ones left.
Perhaps the format of making lower seeds play their way deeper in does work. And having the higher seeds get byes is actually a disadvantage. Anyway, let’s preview the series and talk about Game 1 so you can get ready to continue betting against the WNBA odds.
WNBA Finals Betting Preview – #6 Chicago Sky vs #5 Phoenix Mercury
Chicago Started Strong and Never Looked Back
Trailing by five points at the end of the first quarter, Chicago found new life in the second. They made Phoenix look like a team that was lost, playing tremendous defense for all 10 minutes. They won the period 26-10, entering the half with an 11-point lead.
Kahleah Copper continued her strong play with 21 points and ten rebounds, while Courtney Vandersloot double-doubled with 12 points and 11 assists. Candace Parker had 16 points and eight boards. Allie Quigley added 18.
Phoenix was led by 20 Brittney Griner points. Diana Taurasi had 17, while Skylar Diggins-Smith scored 15. They definitely missed both Sophie Cunningham and Kia Nurse. The shooting was just not the same.
Quick History Lesson
It’s obvious to everybody watching the WNBA that this season was incredible. Las Vegas and Connecticut tore through everybody in the regular season, and both got knocked out. A season of uncertainty is just what is needed to spice things up. And the arguably two-best players ever squaring off is fantastic TV.
Diana Taurasi is the obvious best WNBA player ever. And you can debate Candace Parker as second-best. Both of them want to bring titles to their team. Parker grew up in Chicago, so it is a chance to win one for her hometown. As for Taurasi, she’s an MVP and 10X All-Star. She has been with Phoenix since 2004.
Phoenix won in 2007, 2009, and 2014. They would love to rally and take this one.
Parker’s last win came with the L.A. Sparks in 2016. She’s been in the league since 2008 and would sure value another one.
Shooting Will Determine Game 2 Winner
There are some absolute snipers on both of these teams. For Phoenix, they have Taurasi, who can be as hot as any player on the court at any time. Shay Peddy is a capable scorer, though she is inconsistent. They need more production out of Bria Hartley, who is now the seventh player in the rotation.
On the other side, Vandersloot and Quigley can both hit shots from any spot on the court. Stefanie Dolson has provided some big bench minutes. And, of course, Copper and Parker can hit from deep.
Phoenix has great size in the middle with Brianna Turner and Griner, but neither of them can do much from beyond the arc. They can protect the rim and do their thing, but if it comes down to a shootout, they can’t produce three at a time.
Don’t Sleep on Either Club
Sure, the Sky won big in Game 1. But this thing is far from over. Wednesday’s Game 2 will be fun.
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