Yes, you read that right, this game is being broadcast on Twitter, something the WNBA started last season.
It is a rematch of last week’s game at Target Center, when the Lynx controlled proceedings and beat the defending champion Storm 72-61 in a game that wasn’t really that close. The Lynx brought a dominant defense to the court that night, as they have through all three games of the season so far, held the Storm to nine first quarter points, and were never really challenged after that.
The Storm are of course without league MVP Breanna Stewart and veteran Sue Bird due to injuries, so it’s certainly not the same team that rolled to a title last season. They are led by Jewell Loyd, form Lynx Natasha Howard, who is having an excellent season so far, and point guard Jordin Canada. They have started the season 2-2 and are coming off a tough loss in Chicago to the Sky.
They will certainly be looking get a little of theirs back against the Lynx, who are 3-0 after a difficult win on the road against the Dallas Wings. In truth, the Lynx did not play well in that one, and were a bit fortunate to come away with a win. The Wings put a lot of ball pressure on their guards, particularly Danielle Robinson, both one-on-one and with traps, and the Lynx did not handle it well. They hung on thanks in part to their own defense but also the Wings’ poor shooting.
They are getting production up front from Damiris Dantas and of course from All-Star Sylvia Fowles, but the guard play, particularly offensively, has been very hit or miss. In addition, Napheesa Collier, the rookie who had a monster season opener, has been inconsistent as expected.
Still, with all that, the Lynx are the only undefeated team in the WNBA, which is not something we could have expected after their off-season remodel. It’s a testament to the players, and to Cheryl Reeve’s ability as both a coach and a general manager. As impressive as she has been throughout her tenure with the Lynx, this is arguably her best work: turning over the roster and remaining highly competitive at the same time.
I was excited about this season before it started just to see what this squad would look like after years of more or less the same group; now I’m excited to see how much they can actually achieve.
A couple of notes:
- Natasha Howard has led the Storm in scoring and at least co-led in rebounding in all four of their games. I’m thrilled for her; I really enjoyed watching her develop with the Lynx, and to see her take yet more steps forward is pretty cool.
- We will likely get our first look at Karima Christmas-Kelly, who is listed as probable tonight.
- The Lynx really need to limit their turnovers and find some consistent perimeter scoring.