Playoffs, First Round
score: Storm 64 Comets 67 (L) (1-1)
Watch | If you didn't have goosebumps after
that, there's something wrong with you.
Psyche | It was Roy. That's all you need to
know about the fans' psyche.
Highlight | Izzy coming back in after her
| Unicycle cup-balancing act.
Keyword of the Game | New Refs
the way home as I thought about what to write for this game,
I almost convinced myself to not rail against the refs yet
again. The Storm lost this game through unforced turnovers,
relying on outside shooting too much especially when the inside
game was working, not being aggressive enough on offense and
relaxing too much on help defense. All these things together
allowed the Comets to get back into the game and take the
lead. I told myself that I wasn't going to pin this loss on
the poor and lopsided officiating.
I looked at the box score.
free throws: 25 out of 28.
free throws: 5 out of 5.
means that only 3 or 4 Houston fouls all game long were shooting
fouls, while at least 14 of Seattle's fouls were shooting
fouls. Houston scored 20 more points at the line than Seattle
did. 20. They were called for only 13 fouls the whole game.
That is simply unbelievable.
wasn't just the foul and free throw disparity that ruled this
game. It was also the numerous missed travel calls on Snow,
Canty and Staley. The missed 3-second calls on Snow and Phillips.
The missed ball carry on Canty.
no way around it. Yes the Storm lost this game in large part
due to their own mistakes, but the refs were also a major
contributing factor. To try and pass this insane performance
by the refs off as somehow normal is wrong. I hope WNBA President
Donna Oreander got a good look at the game. She disappeared
at half time, so who knows whether she stuck around to watch
the carnage or not. It was disgraceful.
Storm started the game off in control and attacking the Comets.
LJ and Janell both got off to a good start. LJ was hitting
inside and outside and Janell was in there fighting for rebounds
and taking the ball right at Snow for layups. The Storm built
an 11 point lead but started making mistakes that let the
Comets back in. Mistakes like out of reach passes, bobbled
ball handling, no offensive rebounding — as in everyone
running back up the floor as soon as the shot leaves the shooter's
hand instead of boxing out for the rebound — and then
commiting dumb fouls on the other end. Yes, the Storm were
fouling. So were the Comets. They just weren't getting called
the second half as the Comets slowly caught up, it seemed
like the Storm were determined to keep the lead and keep the
Comets at bay. Every time the Comets would get the lead back
within 4, the Storm would come back and push it out to 6 or
7. All it eventually took were the free throws to add up and
a couple defensive plays from the Comets for them to take
the lead. Staley tied it with free throws on a questionable
foul call against Sue and after a missed travel on Staley.
killer was a steal by Swoopes on Sue that lead to an easy
layup for a 3 point Comet lead. It looked like Sue was calling
out the play and had her head up when Swoopes reached in and
batted the ball out of Sue's hands.
Storm had a chance to take the lead with a few seconds left.
The Comets were up by 1 and Staley was inbounding the ball.
She was running out of time and tried to bounce the ball off
of Sue's legs. Sue stole it and tried to get it out and down
the court. The Storm never seemed to get a good handle on
the ball. LJ got it to Betty who stopped for a jump shot which
missed. Janell got the rebound, but had the ball stripped
away by Staley (I think) and had the ball go out off her hands.
The Comets got the ball back, the Storm had to foul and the
Comet free throws were the last scores of the game to get
back to the 3 point lead.
Storm had their chances and allowed the Comets to take control
of the game. The refs also intervened too much, or not enough,
and hogtied the Storm while letting the Comets do what they
wanted. Add it up and it equals the first Storm home loss
in 10 games.
Storm are better than this and they know it. Swoopes or not,
the Storm are the better team and I'm confident they will
prevail on Saturday. I had been hoping for a win tonight for
two main reasons. First, it would have been nice for LJ to
rest her back for nearly a week before beginning the 2nd round
against Sacramento. Second, I didn't want to fight with Bumbershoot
traffic and crowds on Saturday.
okay — we'll all feel like partying when we leave the
Key on Saturday and it just so happens that the biggest yearly
party in Seattle will be going on outside the arena.
attendance wasn't great, but it was way beyond any other game
in the playoffs so far. Here's an interesting factoid —
the Storm are the only team that hasn't had to resort to discounting
tickets for the playoffs and we still had nearly 8500 in the
Key. LA was selling tickets at half price. Detroit was selling
tickets at the price for a gallon of gas. Houston was giving
tickets away to hurricane victims. If there was a better argument
for Seattle to get the 2006 All-Star game, 10-year anniversary
or not, here it was. More than LA, Houston, Detroit, Connecticut
or New York, the fans in this city came out to support their
team. I hope Donna was taking note of that, too.