July 2, 2022 

Daily Briefing — July 2, 2022: All-Star Prep Academy

Newly crowned All-Star starters and reserves alike make noise ahead of Saturday’s Selection Special

Happy Saturday! Welcome to The Next’s Daily Briefing, featuring the NCAA Roundup, the W Roundup, the daily Watch List and Yesterday’s Recap. Day 48 of the WNBA season has arrived, and by the time you’re reading this, the Chicago Sky are probably making Vanessa Nygaard wish she never dissed Skylar Diggins-Smith. Looking at the early second-half score … oh dear. There is a game being played in Chicago, but it’s certainly not an All-Star game.

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Speaking of, the 2022 All-Star Selection Special will air this afternoon at 3 p.m. ET on ESPN. With co-captains calling the shots instead of just one captain, expect a spicy draft full of surprises! Personally, I’m hoping for someone to beat Elena Delle Donne’s surprise trade request from the 2019 All-Star draft.

But first, read…

  • Our Missy Heidrick gets you caught up on the Big Ten drama as USC and UCLA leave the Pac-12 behind for eastern skies and the implications this may have for both conferences.
  • Our Gabriella Lewis takes you behind the scenes of Tiffany Hayes’ comeback game from a difficult injury to help the Atlanta Dream beat the New York Liberty in overtime.
  • Our Natalie Heavren gives you a heartwarming profile of Richmond’s student-athlete development coordinator Jaide Hinds-Clarke.
  • Our Antonio Losada breaks down the recent flurry of EuroLeague updates, including Breanna Stewart and Emma Meesseman‘s landing spots for the 2022-23 season.
  • For USA Today, Chris Bumbaca sits down with newly minted All-Star and No. 1 overall pick Rhyne Howard to learn about how her first season has gone.
  • From the archives: Nov. 4, 1984 — This is a special one. Little record remains of the 1984 Women’s American Basketball Association (WABA), which lasted less than a season but was home to both Nancy Lieberman and Molly (Bolin) Kazmer. Luckily, there is footage from the broadcast of the second meeting of Lieberman’s Dallas Diamonds and Kazmer’s Columbus Minks, which you can watch here. A real treat for your Saturday afternoon!

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W Roundup

Las Vegas: Signed combo forward Dearica Hamby to a multi-year extension.

New York: Waived big Lorela Cubaj.

NCAA Roundup

Transfer portal:

Out of the portal:

  • Josie Williams: The big out of Utah Valley State committed to Louisville.

Watch List, Saturday, July 2

(All times in ET)

Phoenix @ Chicago, 1 p.m., ESPN (Local: SN)

Friday, July 1 recap

Los Angeles (8–11) beat Dallas (9–12), 97–89. The Sparks took the early lead, but the Wings, likely hoping to avenge their last outing against Los Angeles, managed to claw back a one-possession lead by the end of the first. By the mid-second, Dallas had built a nine-point lead, but a 6–0 Sparks run cut the lead to three heading into halftime. The Sparks would outscore the Wings 25–17 in the third as the Los Angeles bench helped push the lead to five points. By the fourth quarter, Dallas was all-hands-on-deck, but shots just weren’t falling. A dagger 3-pointer from Sparks combo guard Kristi Toliver was the final straw as Los Angeles grabbed its eighth win and second over Dallas. Overall, the Sparks outshot the Wings from the free throw line by 16.2 percentage points, but in all other aspects, the teams were evenly matched.

The Sparks bench puts on a show to secure the lead for Los Angeles.

For the Sparks, center Liz Cambage notched her third double-double of the season with 21 points on 7-for-13 shooting from the field (7–7 FT) and 11 rebounds (two offensive) along with three assists and two steals against five fouls. Big Nneka Ogwumike also had 21 points on 9-for-19 shooting from the field (3–4 FT) along with three rebounds, four assists and two steals on four fouls. Toliver logged 11 points on 3-for-6 shooting from the field (2–5 3pt, 3–3 FT) and a season-high seven assists.

Off-ball guard Arike Ogunbowale led the Wings and all scorers with 23 points on 8-for-16 shooting from the field (2–5 3pt, 5–7 FT) and two assists. Wing Allisha Gray notched 10 points on 4-for-8 shooting from the field (1–3 3pt, 1–2 FT), three rebounds, four assists and two steals. In 22 minutes off the bench, center Teaira McCowan had her third double-double of the season with 12 points on perfect 5-for-5 shooting from the field (2–7 FT) and 10 rebounds on five fouls.

Las Vegas (15–5) beat Minnesota (6–15), 91–85. The Aces went on a 15–2 run to open the game, but production from behind the arc brought the Lynx back within two by the opening minutes of the second. Despite those efforts, Minnesota would find itself down double digits through most of the third quarter, as Las Vegas’ own 3-point prowess allowed it to keep a comfortable lead. Entering the fourth, however, a 10–2 Lynx run cut the lead to just one, and a pair of free throws from Lynx combo guard Rachel Banham would give Minnesota its first lead. As many tight Lynx games have ended, Minnesota just couldn’t hold on, as key turnovers and missed shots opened the door for the Aces to secure the win. Overall, the Aces shot 5.8 percentage points better than the Lynx from the field and out-rebounded them by five. The Lynx shot 6.5 percentage points better than the Aces from three and had nine more second-chance points.

Point guard Chelsea Gray led the Aces with a season-high 21 points on 10-for-12 shooting from the field (1–1 FT), six rebounds, five assists and two steals. Point guard Kelsey Plum notched her second double-double of the season with 18 points on 6-for-14 shooting from the field (3–8 3pt, 3–4 FT) and 10 assists on three fouls. Combo forward Dearica Hamby had 16 points on 7-for-11 from the field (1–2 3pt, 1–2 FT), six rebounds and three steals. The entire Las Vegas bench totaled just 11 points, eight rebounds, three assists and two blocks. Center Iliana Rupert contributed the majority of that production in her 15 minutes, logging eight points on 3-for-6 shooting from the field (1–4 3pt, 1–2 FT) and four rebounds (two offensive).

Behold, two gorgeous sets from Las Vegas. You just can’t get much better than this.

Banham led all scorers with a season-high 24 points on 8-for-12 shooting from the field (6–8 3pt, 2–2 FT) and four assists against three fouls off the bench for Minnesota. Point guard Moriah Jefferson had 20 points on 8-for-12 shooting from the field (2–3 3pt, 2–2 FT), two rebounds, three assists and two steals on three turnovers.

Seattle (13–7) beat Indiana (5–17), 73–57. For the opening minutes of the first quarter, it appeared that the Fever might be able to hold their own, but an 11–2 Seattle run all but crushed that image. The Storm quickly grabbed a double-digit lead to open the second quarter, and it was all but over from that point. One bright spot for Indiana was keeping the Storm to just 27 second-half points and outscoring Seattle by three. Overall, Seattle shot eight percentage points better from the field and 26.1 percentage points better from the free throw line than Indiana.

Big wing Breanna Stewart stuffed the stat sheet while leading Seattle and all scorers with 20 points on 4-for-9 shooting from the field (2–5 3pt, 10–12 FT). Stewart also logged six rebounds, three assists, four steals and two blocks. Off-ball guard Gabby Williams and center Ezi Magbegor combined for 21 points on 9-for-14 shooting from the field and 11 rebounds. Magbegor also logged two blocks and four fouls, while Williams had two steals. Center Tina Charles had nine points on 4-for-7 shooting from the field (1–1 3pt) and eight rebounds (two offensive) on five turnovers and three fouls.

All-Star Stewie with an All-Star three!

Center Queen Egbo led the Fever with her second double-double of the season. Egbo logged a season-high 14 points on 5-for-8 shooting from the field, 12 rebounds (four offensive) and two blocks. Big NaLyssa Smith notched nine points on 3-for-9 shooting from the field (1–2 3pt, 2–5 FT) and six rebounds.

Written by Isabel Rodrigues

Isabel Rodrigues (she/her) is a contributing editor for The Next from upstate New York. She occasionally covers 3x3 and labor in women's basketball.

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