score: Storm 90 Lynx 62 (W) (3-2)
Game Blog | Pelton's
E | Rick
started tonight's game hearing that Minnesota's Simone Augustus
would be out with a season ending torn ACL in her left knee.
A big question for the game was if the hot playing Lynx could
adjust and still play at a high level without their all-star
forward. The follow up question was whether the Storm would
relax with Augustus' absence and allow the rookie-heavy Lynx
to set the pace of the game.
questions were answered early in the first quarter. The Lynx
came out flat and listless. The only player who really seemed
like she was ready to bring more energy and drive to her game
was Charde Houston. She and her shorts were fighting for rebounds
and driving to the basket while her teammates were settling
for jump shots. The Lynx's other stars and high profile rookies
were a bit of a bust.
Wiggins was a non-factor until late in the game when the Storm's
bench was in. With no Augustus to focus on, the Storm guards
really went at her and shut her down. Tanisha in particular
frustrated Wiggins to the point that Wiggins started losing
her composure. The two were at each other enough that it finally
boiled over and Sue had to step in and calm things down. Wiggins
ended up with a technical foul for something she said to T or
to the refs. She also started taking it out on her teammates
and was barking at them.
other Wiggins moment was pretty funny. She was chasing one
of our guards along the baseline past a screen from Ashley
Walker. Walker gave Wiggins a little pop as Candice ran past,
which got the crowd on that end going. It was definitely a
little Cal/Stanford love tap.
Montgomery also got the business from the Storm guards. She
had one good move on Sue, but was hounded, stripped of the
ball and abused for most of the game. The best "welcome
to the WNBA, rook" moment for Montgomery came in the
fourth quarter when she ran into a Suzy Batkovic-Brown screen
and was knocked flat. That got the crowd and the Storm bench
The Storm came out on fire and were up by 10 in the first few
minutes. The Lynx never got any closer except for a short span
in the second quarter when they got back within 7 points of
the Storm. The Storm poured it on from that point forward and
ran away with the game.
guess it isn't surprising that the Lynx hadn't made any real
adjustments yet to Augustus' injury. Her status was confirmed
earlier in the day and the coaching staff had to wing it for
tonight's game. They were also on the back end of a road back-to-back.
I hope the Storm doesn't put much credence into the results
of this game. They caught the Lynx at a serious low ebb in
terms of physical and mental energy. The two teams play two
more times and I think the Storm will have to take this team
for the first few minutes of the third quarter, the Storm
looked great. I don't think any Storm player had a bad game.
Well, I'd qualify that with the fact that it seemed like the
team's free throws were surprisingly off. But aside from that
and the beginning of the third quarter — the Storm were
cruising the whole game.
Lauren was on fire and almost unconcious from the three-point
line. She was extremely active on defense getting not only blocks
on Lynx shots but several steals. The Lynx really had no counter
for LJ. Without Hayden's size or Ohlde's inexplicable ability
to stymie LJ, Lauren went to town inside and out and pretty
much could do whatever she wanted.
wasn't shooting much, but she was dishing like crazy and ended
up with 10 assists. The team as a whole had 21 assists on
26 shots. That my friends is a great stat and Sue led the
of the other really nice things to see was that Janell seemed
to have gotten them message about her shot fakes and went
straight up with the ball when she got the pass in the post.
She had a solid offensive game. It would have been great if
she had rebounded a little better, but then the Storm as a
team were giving up rebounds so it wasn't just her. She did
contribute to one of the best plays of the night at the end
of the third quarter. She got a rebound with just a few seconds
left on the clock and baseball-passed the ball up the court
to Pee Wee Johnson who caught it and was able to hit a lay-up
as the clock wound down.
The other really nice thing about this game was how well the
bench did during the fourth quarter. With the lead hovering
near 30, Coach Agler pulled the starters and allowed the bench
to play the entire fourth quarter. Not only did they get some
quality minutes, but they also got to play against some of the
Lynx starters. The bench didn't extend the lead, but they also
didn't let it get away either. I can think back to several games
over the last couple of years when the Storm were in this same
position and the bench was unable to produce. It was a great
sign of things to come that our bench players came in with a
lot of defensive energy and effort and with offensive ability.
It makes me optimistic about the season.
was Dads and Daughters night. Matt Hasselbeck and his daughters
where at the game. Ashley Walker's parents were also in the
front row and she and her father were featured in time-out
video. Even the dance team got their dads into the act and
four dance team dads got out on the floor and busted a move
or two (except for the white guy... poor white guy).
Sounders' Women were in the stands and got some recognition.