Competing In WNBA Finals “Never Gets Old” For Lynx

Mitchell Hansen
Web Editorial Associate

For the Minnesota Lynx, this is a time of the year that never gets old.

That’s right, we’re talking about the WNBA Finals.

“Just to be back here again, it’s always fun. Every year is a different journey, so every year is a little bit more new,” Lindsay Whalen said. “Having done it as many times as we’ve done it, you have an appreciation for how hard it is and how many ups and downs are in a season. To put yourself in a chance where to need to win one more series to be the champs is where you want to be.”

It’s a time of the year that the Lynx have become accustomed to taking part in. After all, this is the third straight time and the sixth time in seven years that Minnesota has been in the championship series.

“It never gets old. Six Finals appearances in the last seven years says a lot about our team. Just the dedication and drive, coming back every year and getting better, keeping ourselves healthy and keeping this team together,” Seimone Augustus said. “It’s very rare that you can keep a great team of players together, but we wanted to play together for this moment. We are very thankful and appreciative of everything.”

In their five previous appearances in the championship series, the Lynx have found great success, winning three of those five series. The championship seasons occurred in 2011, 2013 and 2015.

“There’s just something about knowing that you’re going to go compete for a championship. You spend the whole regular season trying to accomplish this goal. You can’t compete for a championship without getting to the Finals. This is the step we wanted to take. We’ll see what we can do,” Lynx head coach Cheryl Reeve said. “This is a group that I really, really appreciate that they understand how hard it is to do what they are doing. I don’t know it will really hit them when you think about three straight (Finals appearances) and six in seven years. That hasn’t caught up to them I don’t think. They are pretty caught up in the moment and they wanted to get back.”

The Lynx will square off against the Los Angeles Sparks for the second consecutive WNBA Finals. Minnesota and Los Angeles played against each other last season in one of the best Finals series in the leagues history.

“We have these two teams that played in the championship round last year and we lost by one point. I’m sure we are going to get a lot of questions, but at the same time, I think we are way past LA beating us last year and the focus is on how we are going to win this year,” 2017 WNBA MVP Sylvia Fowles said. “This is just one step closer to where we want to be. I think our team did our team did a really good job of stepping up to the challenges. We’re happy to be back in the spot where we left off last year.”

This season, Minnesota is trying to secure its fourth championship in six tries. And the Lynx think they haven’t even played up to their potential just yet.

“We haven’t even played our best basketball yet, we are still kind of finding ourselves. This would be the perfect time to pull out the best basketball that the Lynx could play,” Seimone Augustus said. “To be able to try and pull something out for Lindsay to win at the Barn, there are just so many great things that could happen, including a fourth championship. We’re looking forward to it. It’s going to be a great matchup obviously, it’s a matchup people have been waiting for. We’re just going to have fun with it.”

The Lynx are up for the challenge and will be ready to go when Game 1 tips off at 2:30 p.m. Sunday at Williams Arena in Minneapolis.

“We have a lot of work to do. You try to not let yourself get too carried away and what happens in the end. You just try to focus on what you have to do on a game-to-game basis, because we know that’s what we have to do,” Whalen said. “This is where we wanted to be all year. This is where we knew we wanted to get to.

“We’re the know the main goal is still out there.”

Get ready, Lynx fans. It’s Finals time.