The two hottest teams in the WNBA tackle each other in a power play of 22:00 on Saturday night!
On the one hand, we have the Connecticut Sun (23-6), winners of 11 games. On the other hand, it’s the Phoenix Mercury (19-10), winners of 10 games.
The main characters of this match are the current East and West players of the week – Jonquel Jones of the Sun and Brittney Griner of Mercury, respectively. While Griner missed the previous Mercury game, she is expected to return to court on Saturday.
We also have a number of other interesting matches, highlighted by revisits to the Valley for two Mercury-Sun players in DeWanna Bonner and Briann January. There’s also the Brionna vs Brianna battle, with Connecticut’s grounded but fundamentally sounding Brionna Jones battling Phoenix’s throbbing and brisk Brianna Turner.
If one of these teams is under pressure to achieve the victory and brush up on the other’s series, among others, it’s the Mercury. Of their 10 consecutive wins, only one came against a team with a winning record — their home blow in the Chicago Sky on August 31st. Yes, the Mercury deserves credit for getting through a cupcake schedule, but there remain questions about their playoff quality and credibility of the contender. A win over the sun will go a long way in substantiating their resume.
If the Sun and Mercury are the two hottest teams in the WNBA, the Dallas Wings and New York Liberty are … not.
Although they had plenty of opportunity to bolster their playoffs, the Dallas Wings (12-17), currently seventh-seeded, and New York Liberty (11-18), who are currently tied for eighth place, have played 10 games in a row. lose. Dallas is 3-7 over their last 10 games; New York is 1-9 over their last 10.
The two groups meet on Saturday night at 20:00 ET, which means someone will have to win a match. The team that wins will gain a significant advantage when it comes to the seventh seed, and if the wing wins, they reach the playoffs.
The Liberty won both previous games between the teams. With another win, their record would be equal to that of the Wings, and because they would possess the tiebreaker, the Liberty would have a hold on the seventh seed. Although the Wings could not win the season series, a win would give them a valuable two-game lead over Liberty for the seventh seed.
Dallas Wings (12-17) vs. New York Liberty (11-18)
When: Saturday, September 11 at 20:00 ET
Where: College Park Center in Arlington, TX
How to watch: Bally Sports Southwest + or SN1
Key to matching: The conditions seem right for a big Natasha Howard game. The Wings will again be without their most reliable mail players in Isabelle Harrison and Satou Sabally. Harrison has played in both previous games and scored a season-high 23 points in the second game on July 5th. Sabally played only in the second game, scoring 16 points, grabbing seven boards and hitting three shots. An exhausted forecourt in Dallas now depends on second-year Bella Alarie and newcomers Charli Collier and Awak Kuier for long minutes. Howard must be able to accomplish her “Flash” magic by using her cleverness and skill to teach her young opponents. She has only played in the first of the previous matches between these teams and scored an effective 17 points.
Meat Injury Report: Moriah Jefferson (doubtful; thigh muscle), Isabelle Harrison (indefinitely; health and safety protocols), Satou Sabally (doubtful; Achilles)
Liberty Injury Report: Jocelyn Willoughby (out for season; left Achilles)
Highlight: Flash shows off her full repertoire against her former team
Phoenix Mercury (19-10) vs. Connecticut Sun (23-6)
When: Saturday, 11 September at 22:00 ET
Where: Footprint Center in Phoenix, AZ
How to watch: NESN + or SN1
Key to matching: While Shey Peddy again proving that she’s an icy killer on Wednesday and sinking three free kicks to give the Mercury the victory over the dream, she deserves praise for more than just her moments of clinging. A rookie in 2019 after being drafted in 2012, Peddy has clearly established herself as one of the WNBA’s 144. She’s a reliable rotation piece for a very good WNBA team. Encouraging for a team that relies on an outdated Diana Taurasi, she successfully scaled up as an appetizer. Although two starts is a small sample size, she scored 10.5 points on 46.2 percent shooting from the field, including 37.5 percent from 3, in an average of 31.7 minutes in her pair start. If Taurasi is out again on Saturday, the Mercury can be confident in the steady Peddy.
Mercury Injury Report: Diana Taurasi (out; left ankle), Alanna Smith (out indefinitely; health and safety protocols)
Sun Injury Report: Alyssa Thomas (doubtful; Achilles)