WNBA Playoffs Sunday: Sun, Sky fight for pace of play while Aces look to slow Mercury's red-hot shooting
Both Connecticut and Phoenix came away with must-win games on Thursday night to even their series at 1-1. The team WNBA fans witnessed on Thursday in Connecticut is exactly the team that was missing in Game 1. While out West, the Aces had no answer for the White Mamba as Diana Taurasi dropped 37 points on 10-13 shooting and 8-11 from downtown. Buckle up; this is only the semifinals!
(1) Connecticut Sun at (6) Chicago Sky prediction: Kahleah Copper over 12.5 points (-130)
This has been my favorite series so far as these two teams play a completely different style of basketball. Chicago likes to push the pace and get easy transition buckets, while Connecticut prefers to wait for a high-percentage shot by wearing down their opponent on the defensive end. It worked for the Sky in Game 1, and for the Sun in Game 2.
I have hit on my last two player props, so I am going to stay right here. WNBA fans have first-hand experienced how good and bad the Chicago Sky can be. However, Kahleah Copper has probably been the most consistent piece of the puzzle. Copper led the Sky in points per game and field-goal percentage in the regular season and has averaged 16.3 points per game and shot 52.1% from the field in her four postseason games so far. Copper’s ability to shoot outside and also get to the rim shouldn’t be ignored in a Sky team that will be looking to match the pace of play in Game 1.
(2) Las Vegas Aces at (5) Phoenix Mercury prediction: 1H Over 87.5 (-118)
Phoenix dominated from start to finish in Game 2 as Taurasi went off for 37 on 10-13 shooting with three of the other four starters for Phoenix also scoring in double-figures. Brianna Turner only notched 4 points but has been the primary defender on A’ja Wilson, only allowing 15 and 12 points when going head-to-head. Regardless of these two recent high-scoring affairs between these two teams, I don’t think the Aces are playing their best basketball. Wilson has been severely limited on her shot attempts by Turner, who just recorded her second consecutive All-Defensive First Team honors, while Liz Cambage is still trying to ease her way back from COVID protocols. There is a lot more scoring to be had and this has hit in all five matchups between the Mercury and Aces so far.