June 13, 2022
Daily Briefing — June 13, 2022: TECH SUPPORT — Ogunbowale, Taurasi earn dramatic technicals on a Spicy Sunday
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It’s Monday, I’m sorry. Welcome to The Next’s Daily Briefing, featuring the W Roundup, daily Watch List and Yesterday’s Recap. Day 31 of the WNBA season was here, featuring a whole bunch of technical fouls. And they really ran the gamut: Arike Ogunbowale got an automatic tech and ejection for kicking the ball into the stands (the booting appeared to be the result of an accidental mis-kick, but you bet she tweeted through it); Diana Taurasi was called for a tech after the Mercury and Mystics’ benches jawed at the beginning of halftime, and later fouled-out; and three players got techs in Minneapolis for an incident Aerial Powers started — including NaLyssa Smith, who somehow got a tech for being shoved. (Powers missed her free-throw, because ball don’t lie.)
In less dramatic news, the Storm are good at holding leads in crunch time, and the Mystics are not. Sabrina Ionescu is very good, but the Sky are better … and the Lynx are much, much worse.
But first, read:
- Our Lucas Seehafer looked at the Lynx’s 45 (forty-five!) missed games from the top of their rotation, and adds some wise words on the absurdity of the universe
- Our Tony East detailed the improvements in Kelsey Mitchell’s game
- The Knoxville News Sentinel’s Cora Hall covered DeLisha Milton-Jones’ journey to and induction into the Hall of Fame
- Swish Appeal’s Eric Nemchock wrote about the divergent paths of the Wings’ sophomore bigs, Awak Kuier and Charli Collier
Watch List, Monday, June 13
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Sunday, June 12 recap
Chicago beat New York, 88-86. The Liberty led by a couple possessions for most of the first half, before the teams went back-and-forth in the final minutes; the Sky had possession, down by one, with 34.5 seconds to go, and then got five offensive boards before Courtney Vandersloot’s game-winning three-pointer. New York shot 14.5 percentage points better from three, but lost the rebounding battle by 15, including grabbing just two offensive boards — the lowest single-game offensive rebounding rate in the league this year, per Across The Timeline; Chicago had 28 assists on its 35 buckets.
Big Emma Meesseman led the Sky with 20 points on 10-for-14 FG (0-1 3pt.) and 11 rebounds (five offensive) for a double-double, plus five assists, two steals and two blocks — just the second player in league history with 20/11/5/2/2 and five offensive boards in a game, and the best true-shooting of any 20/11/5/2/2 game, per Sports Reference; point guard Courtney Vandersloot recorded a season-high-20-point, 10-assists double-double on 9-for-17 shooting (2-3 3pt.), with six rebounds and just one turnover; combo guard Allie Quigley notched 16 points on 6-for-15 from the field and 2-for-6 from three, three rebounds and four assists.
New York was led by Sabrina Ionescu’s second-career triple-double, with 27 points (9-16 FG, 3-6 3pt., 6-6 FT), a career-high 13 rebounds and a career-high-tying 12 assists — making her: the fourth player and the fastest player to have multiple career triple-doubles, the second-highest scorer in a triple-double performance, and the only player to have a trip-dub with at least 12 rebounds and assists each (all per ATT); center Stefanie Dolson had 12 points on 5-for-6 shooting (2-3 3pt.), five rebounds, four assists and two steals against three turnovers.
Seattle beat Dallas, 84-79. The Wings led for the first 15.5 minutes; the Storm had separate second-half leads of 10, seven and eight points, before Dallas got within one in the final minutes. Seattle shot 8.2 percentage points better from three, but lost the rebounding battle by 16 — the fourth-lowest single-game rebounding rate in the league this year, and the first team with a mark under 40% to still win, per ATT; the Storm assisted on 23 of their 29 buckets; Seattle notched 12 steals, part of 19 Wing turnovers.
Big wing Breanna Stewart led the Storm with 25 points on 8-for-15 shooting (1-4 3pt., 8-8 FT), eight rebounds, four assists and three steals; combo guard Jewell Loyd had 22 points on 9-for-20 from the field and 4-for-8 from three and two rebounds; center Ezi Magbegor notched 13 points on 4-for-7 FG (2-3 3pt. — her second-straight multi-three), two assists, five blocks and five fouls in 33 minutes.
Dallas was led by wing Allisha Gray’s 20 points on 8-for-12 from the field and a season-high-tying 4-for-6 from three, as well as three assists; big wing Satou Sabally left with a knee injury in the early third quarter, finishing with 13 points in 19 minutes on 6-for-10 shooting (0-2 3pt.), four rebounds and two assists; center Teaira McCowan notched 13 points on 3-for-5 FG (7-7 FT), six rebounds (five offensive) and two blocks against six turnovers and four fouls in 17 minutes.
Phoenix beat Washington, 99-90 in overtime. The teams were within two possessions for the entire game, until the Mercury went on a 10-0 run in the middle of overtime. Phoenix shot 11.4 percentage points better from the field, but had 13 fewer free-throws and 12 fewer rebounds; the Mystics notched 10 rebounds, part of 18 Mercury turnovers; the teams combined for 47 fouls.
Phoenix was led by combo guard Skylar Diggins-Smith’s 27 points on 8-for-17 from the field (2-5 3pt.) and 9-for-11 from the line, four rebounds, five assists and three steals against four fouls in 41 minutes; combo guard Diana Taurasi fouled-out in 36 minutes, finishing with 20 points on 7-for-16 shooting (3-11 3pt.), three rebounds, seven assists and three turnovers; backup point guard Shey Peddy notched 12 points on 4-for-5 FG (2-3 3pt.), three assists, and three steals against two turnovers.
Big Myisha Hines-Allen led Washington with a double-double of a season-high 18 points on 7-for-12 FG (2-4 3pt.) and 10 rebounds, plus three assists and two steals against six turnovers; off-ball guard Ariel Atkins fouled-out in 32 minutes, finishing with 15 points on 3-for-16 from the field, 1-for-8 from three, and 8-for-9 from the line, four rebounds and three assists; off-ball guard Alysha Clark notched 12 points on 4-for-9 shooting (2-5 3pt.), seven rebounds (three rebounds), four assists and three steals without a turnover against four fouls in 29 minutes.
Indiana beat Minnesota, 84-80. The Fever led by nine in the early third quarter, but trailed from the mid-third through the mid-fourth. Indiana shot 43.5% from three while holding the Lynx to 23.8% from deep, and added a season-high eight blocks.
Big NaLyssa Smith led the Fever with a career-high 21-point, 14-rebound double-double on 8-for-10 FG (2-2 3pt.), plus four assists and two blocks against two turnovers — joining Candace Parker and A’ja Wilson as the only rookies in W history to put up 20/14/4/2, per ATT; point guard Danielle Robinson had 16 points on 7-for-12 shooting (1-2 3pt.), four rebounds, and six assists; combo forward Victoria Vivians and combo guard Kelsey Mitchell combined for 30 points on 11-for-28 from the field and 6-for-15 from three and nine assists, with Vivians adding two steals and two turnovers.
Minnesota was led by off-ball guard Aerial Powers’ near-triple-double of 15 points on 5-for-14 from the field (0-2 3pt.) and 5-for-7 from the line, a career-high 11 rebounds and seven assists, plus two steals against three turnovers; backup big Nikolina Milić had a career-high 23 points on 11-for-19 FG (1-4 3pt.), six rebounds (three offensive) and three assists without a turnover; off-ball guard Bridget Carleton notched 11 points on 4-for-7 shooting (2-4 3pt.), five rebounds and four assists against two turnovers.