Hope everyone had a safe and happy 4th of July … despite the weather, for those of us in the Seattle area. While you may have the day off, the team is back at work today preparing for tomorrow’s Kids Day game against the New York Liberty. Let’s check the links, after a quick note that the Women’s Hoops Blog has moved – update your bookmarks.
Lauren Jackson takes a hit, but Storm win again – Jayda Evans, Seattle Times
Jackson scored 13 of her game-high 20 points in the opening quarter, helping Seattle jump to an early 13-0 lead. Yet, when she was evaluated after the game, it was determined that she played the final three quarters with a mild concussion.
The Australian rambled about blurred vision as she spoke freely to the media postgame. Jackson struggled after halftime (1-of-4 shooting) and the Sparks pulled to three points twice in the second half after trailing 43-33 at halftime.
But with the Storm leading 60-57 with 7:36 remaining, Seattle guards Sue Bird and Tanisha Wright hit consecutive three-pointers to ignite a 12-2 run, capped by a layin by Swin Cash off an assist from Jackson.
Also, from Friday: Tanisha Wright has won over Storm fans with improved play – Jayda Evans, Seattle Times
“She’s not somebody that wants to play the point,” Agler said of Wright. “How T has been playing in Sue’s absence, it has given us a chance to stay competitive. She’s really embraced that and done it for the team.”
Storm stop Sparks 75-62 for sixth straight win – Christopher Wells, seattlepi.com
The Storm wasted no time taking control as they rallied for a 13-0 lead before L.A. finally scored with six minutes left in the quarter. By the end of the first quarter, the Storm was well in front at 27-16 behind Jackson’s 13 points.
After games against L.A. I always enjoy getting the opposing perspective from Sparks co-owner Kathy Goodman, who blogs for the Los Angeles Times’ Fabulous Forum blog.
It is hard to argue with the level of basketball Seattle is playing. They have the best record in the league because they have earned it — playing consistently good team ball with a core that has been together for a couple of seasons and some great new additions this year. Going into the game, I still felt that if we played our best basketball and they made some mistakes, we could have things go our way. Although we did not continue our win streak — Seattle beat us 75-62 — I left the game feeling that we really competed hard. Seattle just didn’t make enough mistakes.
The Storm retains the top spot in WNBA.com’s power rankings.
The league’s best team improved to 14-2 since the last go round of team rankings and, in turn, remains the team to beat.
What Bird is is this–among the best point guards in the history of her league. Like Jason Kidd. Like Kidd, Bird is unflappable dribbling one-on-one against defenders. Once she gets up court, like Kidd, she looks to distribute before she looks to score. Bird is second all-time in WNBA career assists; Kidd is second all-time in NBA career assists.
Lauren Jackson is replicating Kemp’s best season with the Storm this year. Like Kemp, Jackson easily posts up slower or smaller defenders. Or she steps back and shoots from outside. Jackson can dominate the boards, as she did last night against San Antonio when she grabbed as many offensive boards as the entire Silver Stars team.