Lynx hold off Sparks to earn their fourth WNBA title in seven years

October 8, 2017

A series recap of the WNBA Finals between the Los Angeles Sparks and the Minnesota Lynx.

SERIES RECAP

In Game 1 of the Finals, the Los Angeles Sparks held on to beat the Minnesota Lynx 85 to 84. In Game 2 the Sparks ended up down by 20 points in the third quarter on the road. They had plenty of opportunities to close out this game but couldn’t. It was long two pointers that killed the Sparks that the Lynx hit instead of the three ball.

Game 3 the Sparks came back home to Staples Center and pulled out a victory.  They then took a 2-1 series lead.

Game 5 was not decided on the perimeter but won in the paint where the Sparks were outrebounded by Minnesota 46 to 29.

The winner of this series had to do the little things that take discipline like going for the 50-50 balls. According to Candace Parker “rebounding” is what hurt L.A. in Game 4 and Game 5. She said when they control the rebounding game, they get into their offensive rhythm.

Coach Brian Agler said, “We just didn’t do, what we had to do to keep Sylvia Fowles of the glass.”

In Game 5 the Sparks never led but cut the deficit from 12 to 3 points in the final minute of regulation.  That didn’t last long as Maya Moore got free and hit a jumper to increase the lead to five.

The loss of Nneka Ogwumike for the Sparks limited their enforcer in the paint. She had fouled out with 5:29 remaining in the fourth quarter–the player who hit the game-winning shot in last year’s Game 5.

The Lynx won their 4th WNBA title in seven years with critical help from  Lindsay Whalen who had a flashback from when she played in college and made great plays down the stretch.

LOOKING AHEAD

Point guard Odyssey Sims, from Baylor, is developing into one of the most dynamic guards in the league and will certainly help L.A. contend for another title in 2018.

Ogwumike said even though the Sparks couldn’t pull out the win they know how to win the Finals and why they lost this year.  She said there is no drawing up Xs and Os, you either want to rebound or you don’t.

The Sparks will make adjustments and come back with a different mentality next year. They are looking to bounce back stronger and have a killer instinct next year.

Be sure to get your 2018 Sparks season tickets now; you don’t want to miss another great season of women’s pro basketball.

 

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