Lynx at Sparks
7:30 pm CDT
Here we are. After getting hounded out of the building by the Sparks’ pressure defense and aggressive rebounding in game three, the Lynx find themselves on the precipice heading into game four. Down two game to one in this best-of-five series, the Lynx face elimination unless they can win tonight in Los Angeles, which would force a game five back in Minneapolis.
In order to get that win, the Lynx are going to have to figure out a counter to the Sparks defensive pressure on the perimeter, which gave the Lynx fits and caused innumerable turnovers in game three. They also need to reassert their strength on the boards, where they were beaten badly, something that we are not used to seeing from this group.
For the Sparks, Candace Parker really came alive in game three, showing off her star form attacking the basket with success and gobbling up rebounds. When Parker and league MVP Nneka Ogwumike also get major contributions from players like Alana Beard and Essence Carson as they did on Friday night, they become a very difficult team to beat. Their three-point shooting came also came alive in game three after they struggled from downtown at Target Center in the first two games, so the Lynx have a lot of things to contend with tonight.
They will almost certainly need a much more involved performance from Maya Moore, who took only seven shots in game three and finished with nine points. That’s not enough from their MVP candidate and best player. She’s also their best play-maker, and needs the ball in her hands much more often tonight.
Mostly though, they need to match the Sparks’ aggression, something they failed to do in game three. We know they are capable of winning in Los Angeles, but it will take their best to get it done tonight.
Enjoy the game. Chat here. Go Lynx.