Home playoff games aren’t as easy as you probably think.
Well, I don’t know what you think so I shouldn’t jump to conclusions.
But after Minnesota lost Game 1 of the WNBA Finals on Sunday (even though they did the same thing last year and won the Finals, but whatever), people were wondering what was up.
The Lynx proved that nothing was up. Everything was normal and they beat the Sparks 79-60 on Tuesday night at the Target Center to tie the WNBA Finals at 1-1.
The reason I wrote ‘home playoff games aren’t as easy’ is because 90 percent of the pressure is on the home team, especially in Game 1. If you’re the away team and you lose the first game, so what? You still have the second game and two home games. But if the home team loses Game 1? Well, hot diggity. That’s pressure.
But the Lynx didn’t back down to that pressure in Game 2 thanks to clutch plays from pretty much everyone. There was a Peyton Manning-like (pre-2015) pass from Maya Moore to Lindsay Whalen for a layup. There were a few second-chance plays from Sylvia Fowles. And Jia Perkins hit a fade-away shot that didn’t seem makeable.
Are there things to work on going into Game 3 in Los Angeles? Well, of course. But that’s always going to be the case with head coach Cheryl Reeve. And that’s a compliment and that’s what makes her the best coach in the WNBA. There’s always something to improve on.
Late in the game, the Lynx flexed their championship muscles. The final five minutes of the fourth quarter looked like a highlight film for the Lynx that a fan would post to YouTube after the game. Minnesota didn’t allow the Sparks to get any easy buckets while hitting easy bucket after bucket themselves, thanks to fast breaks and an efficient offense.
Sparks star Candace Parker shot just 3-for-12 from the field and had a +/- of -20, which is not good. At all.
Moore led the Lynx with 21 points and 12 rebounds.
All tied up at 1-1.
Game 3. Here we go.
The Lynx will travel to play the Sparks in Los Angeles on Friday at 7 p.m. CT.