July 6, 2020 

2020 WNBA Simulation: Unpredictable 2020 season ends with another Mystics title

Dramatic playoffs end with Washington under the confetti again

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We are proud to announce a collaboration with Pivot Analysis to bring you a simulated 2020 WNBA season, based on the schedule as originally written. See the full results, box scores and standings, continually updated, here.

Elena Delle Donne, Emma Meesseman, Natasha Cloud and LaToya Sanders celebrate the team’s 2019 title. Photo by Domenic Allegra.

The Pivot Analysis WNBA Simulator 2020 has taken us through the entire 2020 season, including the Playoffs where there was as much surprise and drama as any other. 

Despite being the eight seed, the Atlanta Dream advanced to the semifinals after narrowly beating Las Vegas in the first round and routing the Connecticut Sun in the second round, 102-77.

The Minnesota Lynx advanced to the semifinals as the seven seed, beating the Los Angeles Sparks and the Dallas Wings. As for the Wings, the team has still not advanced past their first playoff game. 

The Chicago Sky advanced to the Finals in four games, winning each of their games by five points or less. The Washington Mystics swept the Lynx and won their games by an average of 10 points. 

The five-game finals series was one to remember, with the Mystics securing the team’s second straight title in the final moments. 

Game 1: Chicago 98 – Washington 94

Diamond DeShields led the way for Chicago with 23 points, four rebounds, two assists and a steal. Stefanie Dolson led the team with seven rebounds and also added 12 points, four assists, and a block. 

Despite Elena Delle Donne, Tina Charles and Emma Meesseman all scoring at least 18 points, the Mystics explosive offense fell just short. 

Game 2: Chicago 93 – Washington 82

Allie Quigley led the Sky to a 2-0 lead in the series with 24 points, three rebounds, three assists and a steal. The team shot 50.8 percent from the floor and 47.6 percent from three with Quigley and Courtney Vandersloot combining for seven of the team’s 10 threes.

While Washington’s offense is strong enough to win scoring 82 points most nights, the team’s 41.2 percent from the floor and 38.1 percent from three was simply not enough against the Sky. 

Even Delle Donne was slightly off, missing two of her five free throws. 

Game 3: Washington 99 – Chicago 82

The Mystics bounced back shooting 50.7 percent from the floor and 50 percent from three. Six different Mystics players made a three while the Sky comparatively struggled. Delle Donne and Charles combined for 46 points, 13 points, four assists and two blocks. The Sky were unable to stop the Mystics’ inside attack. 

DeShields struggles also hurt the Sky, she made 3 of her 18 shots and couldn’t find the rhythm that was present in the first two games. 

Game 4: Washington 94 – Chicago 87

As the Mystics even the series, they kept their offensive attack balanced with six players scoring in double figures. 

The Sky have not been to the Finals since 2014 and the Mystics’ experience from the last two years is evident. 

While the Sky may have started strong, but their offense has been unable to get over the hump in the last two games. DeShields put up 22 points but just three other players scored in double figures. 

Game 5: Washington 96 – Chicago 93 

Much like the rest of the series Game 5 came down to just the narrowest of margins. While Washington had better shooting percentages and more rebounds, the Sky had fewer turnovers and a better free throw percentage. 

Delle Donne and Charles combined for 49 points and 16 rebounds, once again taking over the game and being the difference-makers for the team. 

DeShields, Dolson, Quigley, Gabby Williams and Azurá Stevens all scored in double figures but it wasn’t enough. However, it’s clear the Sky are in a position to be back in the same spot again next year.

Written by Natalie Heavren

Natalie Heavren has been a contributor to The Next since February 2019 and currently writes about the Atlantic 10 conference, the WNBA and the WBL.

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