A candid Trudi Lacey discusses tonight’s preseason game

May 10, 2012 2:13pm
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Washington Mystic’s head coach Trudi Lacey discusses tonight’s preseason game against the Chicago Sky. “We got a couple things, under our belt, that we’re going to try. We really want to perfect our team defense, so that will be a point of emphasis.”

The Washington Mystics have undergone quite a change in personnel this off-season. They will be one of the more interesting teams to follow early in the year.

Key dates for the 2012 WNBA season

May 7, 2012 4:35pm
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Some quick thoughts on the unique schedule this season with the 2012 Summer Olympic Games in London. These dates can be found on the WNBA home page linked below.

Key Dates for the 2012 WNBA season

Mon., April 16 WNBA Draft
Sun., April 29 Training Camp Starts
Sat., May 5 Pre-season Games Begins
Fri., May 18 Regular Season Begins
Sat., July 14 – Wed., Aug. 15 Olympic Break
Fri., July 27 – Sun., Aug. 12 2012 Olympic Games – London, UK
Thur, August 16 Second Half Schedule Starts
Sun., September 23 WNBA Regular Season Ends
Thur., September 27 Playoffs Begin
Wed., October 24 Last Possible Finals Date

WNBA Draft, April 16th: This date has obviously passed but rookies are finally getting a taste of the league as training camps have started. Their impacts will vary greatly, with some just hoping to earn a roster spot, while others such as first overall pick Nneka Ogwumike looking to provide a major contribute right away. She was the consensus top player in this year’s draft in what some have called a “one-player” draft. Tulsa’s Glory Johnson will have chance to play major minutes as she landed with the Shock. Ohio State’s Samantha Prahalis could be one rookie with quite a bit of pressure as the Mercury are lacking a true point guard besides her.

Training Camp Starts, April 29th: A lot of the coverage this week will deal with players fighting for the last few roster spots. While some rosters like Minnesota look pretty clear, others such as Tulsa and Indiana still have a lot of question marks for the last 2 or 3 spots on the roster.

Pre-season Games Begin, May 5th: 3 preseason games were played this past weekend with games every day this week. Nate Parham at Swish Appeal has some further coverage on the preseason’s first games.

Regular Season Begins, May 18th: The Los Angeles Sparks, with new coach Carol Ross will head to the Northwest, and face a veteran Seattle Storm squad in this year’s first game.

Olympic Break, July 14th – August 15th: A month long break will divide this year’s WNBA schedule into basically two different seasons. While they will all count toward making the playoffs this season, it’s going to be a very interesting  pre-Olympic and post-Olympic portion of the schedule for many teams.

2012 Olympic Games – London, UK, July 27 – August 12th: Many of the league’s best players will be on display. Team USA is stacked with a potential starting lineup of Bird, Taurasi, Catchings, Parker and Fowles.

Second Half Schedule Starts, August 16th: The 2nd half of the season could become one big question mark. Will the break be good for some teams and bad for others?  With so many of the league’s top players playing in Europe during the off-season, will those extra Olympic games result in injuries or tired legs down the stretch for a team like Connecticut? Also, how will the break help a team like Tulsa who should get Cambage back and some rest for other players? (assuming they are still in the playoff hunt?)

We are back for the 2012 WNBA season

May 4, 2012 7:54am
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We are happy to announce we will be back covering the WNBA for the 2012 season. While other jobs and commitments, did not allow us to provide coverage through the duration of the season, we look forward to the start of a new year.

 

 

Part 1: Another WNBA installment of “Did you know?”

August 5, 2011 2:37pm
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Part 1 of 2

We did a segment earlier this season where we shared some interesting statistics on the WNBA. We wanted to re-visit this idea and find some new interesting statistics and tidbits for each of the league’s 12 teams. Here’s is Part 1 of “Did you Know?”

Atlanta Dream: The Dream are the league’s 2nd fastest team ahead of San Antonio and Minnesota and behind Phoenix. What is interesting is that generally the faster they play, the worst they do.  In their 5 fastest games, all played with at least 86 possessions, the Dream are 1-4, -9 point differential. In their 5 slowest games all played at less than 79 possessions, the Dream are 4-1 with a +8 point differential.

Chicago Sky: Much has been said about the horrid 4th quarter performance by Chicago as they scored 1 point in the entire quarter to lose at New York by 10 on Thursday. While their 4th quarter efficiency was certainly the worst this season for a single quarter (if not the worst ever, which I think it was) their efficiency for the entire game was only the 2nd worst offensive output of the year.  Seattle’s 74-50 loss to the Sparks, in the 1st week of the season, takes the cake. While Tulsa has come close many times, they never dipped below a 70 efficiency.

Connecticut Sun: I tend to think of the Sun as very balanced and deep. While that might be true, Tina Charles and Renee Montgomery have each come up with big single game performances this season. Charles has recorded a 31 point game, a 23 rebound game which is 5 higher than anyone this season, including 15 and 14 rebound performances, and 5 block game. Meanwhile her teammate on the perimeter Montgomery, has recorded a team high 33 point game which included 6 3-pointers, a 10 assist game, and a 5 steal game.

Los Angeles Sparks: It is assumed that Candace Parker is really, really good. Possibly the best women’s player in the world. The Sparks only played the first 6 games (6.5 as she was injured in their game at New York) with her in the lineup. With her in the lineup LA went over 110 offensive efficiency in 3 of their 1st 6 games and held their opponents under 100 in 3 of their first 6 games. Since then that New York game, without Parker in the lineup LA has gone over 110 only once in 12 games, and held opponents to less than 100 in only 2 of 12 games.

Minnesota Lynx: Taj McWilliams-Franklin was the only Minnesota starter to not make the All-Star team, which might automatically designate her the most underrated player in the league. She leads Minnesota with 15.8 net plus/minus rating and has been crucial to the success of this Lynx team. While she isn’t lighting up the scoreboard, her veteran leadership and understanding of where to be on the floor is exhibited by her 3rd best net plus/minus in the league.

Washington Mystics: The Mystics might be suffering through a difficult season, but at least they know who they are, and attempt to play to their strengths. Relying on their front line of Langhorne and Anosike, with not much bench to speak of, Washington has played at the slowest tempo in the league. They also crash the boards as they have the 3rd most second chance points which in part explains why they have taken the 2nd most shots from the 1-5 feet.

In part 2, we will look at the remaining 6 teams in the WNBA.

WNBA resumes play for the 2nd half of the season

July 25, 2011 10:52am
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After a back and forth game where neither team led by more than 5 points, the East defeated the West 118-113 in the 2011 WNBA All-Star game. After last season’s format pitting the USA National Team against the WNBA All-Stars (or the best players that weren’t already on the national side), the league returned to the traditional conference vs conference match-up. This game definitely showcased the amount of talent this league has to offer.

All but two teams return to action on Tuesday, with 5 games scheduled as the league begins the 2nd half of the season.

San Antonio at Washington: The Silver Stars will look to get back their shooting form displayed in the early part of the season, while the Mystics look to fight out from the bottom of the Eastern conference.  Washington has played better since Langhorne has been back healthy, but will have to contend with the deep Silver Stars bench to get this much needed home win.

Connecticut at Chicago: Two of the best young post players meet again in Charles and Fowles. The Sun look to turn their fortunes around on the road, while the Sky too have enjoyed better success in their home arena.

Los Angeles at Minnesota: The Sparks hope to turn it around on the road after two straight losses at home. The problem is they have to travel to Minnesota who beat them by 17 earlier this season, and that was with Parker in the lineup.

Atlanta at Tulsa: The Dream are hoping to find last year’s form, while the Shock are looking for anything but the form they have shown since last season. We could see some familiar faces back in their respective starting lineups if Sancho Lyttle and Ivory Latta return for this game.

Seattle at Phoenix: How much things have changed in the short season as these two teams met in Seattle to start the season. The Storm had Lauren Jackson then, while the Mercury were still looking for an offense of all things. Fast forward to tomorrow, where the Storm hope to slow down the leagues best offense without LJ, and turn around their road woes all in one trip.

The Atlanta Dream are slowly finding their identity

July 20, 2011 1:45pm
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They were the consensus preseason favorite to win the Eastern conference. They added all-star PG Lindsey Harding, the supposed missing piece. They were coming off their 2010 WNBA Finals run. This was supposed to be the year it would finally come together for coach Meadors and the Atlanta Dream. On paper they had it all.

In reality, the Dream came into the season banged up and lacking a true team element. They have arguably one of the most talented rosters in the league, but are now only finding their identity.

Today Atlanta defeated the Mystics 86-79, lead by Angel McCoughtry’s season-high 33 points. One of the biggest reasons for the Dream’s slow start has been Angel’s injured knee which has kept her from playing at a 100%. After some time off with their recent schedule, it appears Angel and Atlanta have started to turn the corner. After the win against Indiana, McCoughtry said, “The team did great.  We have really come into our own.  We’re playing with great chemistry.  We’re moving the ball well and sharing it.  Everyone is out there playing well together.  It’s good to see our growth and we want to continue to grow and get better as a team.”

The player with possibly the most pressure has been Harding, whose offseason move to Atlanta was among the most talked about. After struggling to find her role as the point guard of a new team, Harding has been one of the reasons for Atlanta’s current 3-game win streak.  After the win over the Fever, coach Meadors said, “Lindsey played really awesome.  She controlled the game, the pace of the game. Even though we had a lot of fast breaks, she was leading in a lot of those situations.  And she distributed the ball really well to her teammates.”

Atlanta has been improving their play on the defensive end which has turned into more fast-break opportunities for a Dream team that likes getting out on the break. “We’re able to score off our defense and get layups.  I think if we can continue to play that aggressive defensively, than we can run and score off our defense. That’s the difference,” said coach Meadors.

With Atlanta still waiting on Sancho Lyttle to make a return, the Dream still have an entire 2nd-half of the season to live up to their preseason hype. I think this team still has time to be the darling of the Eastern conference that so many people made them out to be before this season started.

 

Injury Report