Tuesday night, the San Antonio Silver Stars would not be denied. And the Los Angeles Sparks’ reaction pretty much sums up its WNBA season.
Nothing against the Sparks; the team has just had a disappointing year, starting with the injury that put Candace Parker on the sidelines for much of the season. But I’m not sure any team can triumph over the Silver Stars when Becky Hammon is on fire. And Tuesday night, she was burning up the court with a season high 37 points.
That gives San Antonio the final slot in the WNBA playoffs, which start September 15. Games remain that will determine the seed order, but the teams are set. In the West, we’ll see San Antonio compete with the Minnesota Lynx, Seattle Storm, and Phoenix Mercury. In the East, the Indiana Fever, New York Liberty, Connecticut Sun and Atlanta Dream will vie for the conference title. So far, Minnesota and Indiana have secured home court advantage in the playoffs as the top seed in their respective conferences.
Do I have a prediction? But of course: This is the season of the Lynx.
Not that the Lynx — or any team — can stroll into the championship unchallenged. Every one of the playoff teams fought hard and played well. By the end of the regular season, most of them could have 20 wins or more. And MVP candidates are everywhere you look.
In fact, the race for MVP is a testimony to the parity in the WNBA these days. My prediction? Tina Charles.
The truth is, though, that once the playoffs start, anything can happen. But one thing is certain: This will be the most competitive series yet.
What are your predictions for the 2011 WNBA playoffs? Who’s your personal MVP?
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