Lynx 86, Sparks 61: Unde-PHEE table
When I arrived at the LA Convention Center, the media liaison officer told me that we were going to have a special evening as the The sparks of Los Angeles would make a special celebration all night long for their doubly snubbed star, Nneka Ogwumike, for her appearance in Space Jam 2.
Good for the loyal local Sparks in attendance, as those would be the most exciting parts of the game for them.
The packed house in LA was ROCKIN here on a Sunday night to close out the Sparks at the LA Convention Center.
Dance teams were in the building.
Wanda Sykes was in the building.
The Disney heroes were in the building.
The Sparks, unfortunately, weren’t in the building.#CantTameUs
– YoLeo (@ Y0Leo) July 12, 2021
the Minnesota Lynx were coming off a league-high 6-game winning streak, while the Sparks were coming off a 5-game losing streak, the worst in the league. Regardless of their current records or streaks, there is always a palpable buzz in the building whenever these 2 teams go head to head. Let’s not forget what happened the last time these 2 teams met in Minnesota.
The entertainment for my first in-person WNBA / NBA coverage was on. The packed house gave the Sparks a boost all night long. However it would be necessary a lot more than a loud crowd at home for Los Angeles to have a chance. To be fair, the game was not really competitive at any time other than a 3rd quarter run where the Sparks were able to get the game as close as 6 at the start of the 3rd quarter. What you saw all night was the Lynx punishing the Sparks in the paint (Lynx won the PIP 44-30 battle) while dotting them with three timely pointers (Lynx won the 3 point battle of the 19 to 19/04 to 15).
Lynx played on the offensive like a fighter. Tenderize the body (paint) early, then go for KO punches when open (3s)#CantTameUs
– YoLeo (@ Y0Leo) July 12, 2021
That being said, you can’t say the Sparks have folded. They played their typical physical defense and there were bodies that hit the ground on both sides. Zahui B warmed up after taking some pictures. Dantas also shot down. At the end of the day, we saw 3 pronounced technical faults (2 for LA, 1 for MIN) and a few glaring faults at the limit.
Now let’s talk a bit about Napheesa Necklace.
Napheesa Collier, with a smile, on what worked for her in the post tonight:
“Apparently I was really strong tonight. A lot of people were falling to the ground.”
Phee has had enough of your flop
(Q of @ dblfluidity)
– Jack Borman (@ jrborman13) July 12, 2021
Napheesa Collier on her quote “I am strong” during tonight’s game:
âHonestly, I was sarcastic. Every time I touched someone they would fall over, so I guess I was really strong today. I had to eat my protein.â #CantTameUs
– Dani Bar-Lavi (@dblfluidity) July 12, 2021
Phee tied his career-high 27 points tonight and nearly doubled the next closest goalscorer tonight (Clarendon, Sykes and Wheeler all scored 14). His game was, in his words, “super strong”. She intimidated all bad defenders in her own way, especially at the post. His development as a leader both with his playing on the pitch and his voice within the team has been one of the best parts of this season. She’s about to have a busy break between the stars and the Olympics, but we’ll surely be monitoring her progress next month.
Since the game was so one-sided, there’s not much more I can really get into. Instead, I’ll share with you some of my favorite observations from my perspective in the media row:
- Wanda sykes got the crowd excited in the 2nd half as she participated in a little dance routine. It took about 2 minutes to google if it was related to Brittney Sykes Sparks, but couldn’t find anything.
- There was a TikTok dance troupe (I think) that kept the energy high all night. They were featured on stage and on the pitch throughout the game and as a below average dancer I was very impressed with what some of these kids could do. I’m glad that there has been a diverse group of dancers as opposed to the more well-known culture appropriators who have gone viral.
- All right, listen to me. I think so Bugs and Lola Bunny quite suited for the Sparks tonight, things could have been more interesting in more ways than one.
- There were a few Lynx fans in attendance tonight! I was happy to see Minnesota jerseys here in LA. I guess that’s what happens when you have a successful organization.
- Finally, I wanted to congratulate the fans present. Even though the majority were Sparks fans, the vibe I got in the only WNBA game I’ve attended so far was 5 times better than almost any NBA game I’ve seen. assisted. Hope you get the chance to (safely) experience a local WNBA game if you get the chance! Definitely will come back even if not for a Lynx game.
Highlights of the game
- Sylvie fowles continues its season of redemption. She had 10 points and 7 rebounds in just 26 minutes, but she really controlled the defensive end of the field. Big Syl’s presence was the main reason the Sparks shot just 36.7 percent from the field.
- A quick nod to Layshia Clarendon (14/3/8) and Brigitte Carleton (10/2) like other solid contributors tonight, although you can really go down the list and find some positive things to say about any player. It was yet another total team effort.
- Although Los Angeles have eliminated both Nneka & Chiney Ogwumike and Kristi Tolliver, the court’s product is really not good. You can tell their style of basketball is all about increasing the pressure on the defense while slowly taking the offense off the half court, but there’s really not much to like there. I banged that drum for a while for LA sake, but I’m surprised Head Coach Derek Fisher still has a job. He has largely failed to make the most of roster talent in Los Angeles, but I feel like he has also failed to make any adjustments when the going gets tough as well. .
- There was a really sad moment in the 4th quarter when the Sparks forced perhaps 3-4 live-ball turnovers and completely smoked the transition layup opportunities that followed, often with 3 defensemen in the way. The crowd chickened out in a way most Timberwolves fans can relate to. I smiled like the Grinch under my mask in the media row.
We have finally arrived at the Olympic break! With 19 games on the books, only 13. The non-Olympic Lynx will have exactly 5 weeks off and return home against the New York Liberty August 15.
In the meantime, Canis Hoopus will be there to bring you news and updates on the Olympic Women’s Basketball Games related to the Lynx roster. In addition to the United States team, Brigitte Carleton and Nathalie Achonwa will represent Team Canada at the 2020 Games (Dantas probably would have represented for the Brazil squad had they qualified). See you soon and never forget:
Support women’s sport !!!