Lynx Playoff Watch Viewing Guide | Friday, August 17

Believe it or not, there are only three days left in the WNBA regular season.

It’s been a season defined by an incredibly high level of competition, and fittingly, playoff seeding has still yet to be determined.

The Lynx’s most likely scenario is ending up in seventh place—where they currently sit. However, it’s also possible for them to move up to the No. 6 seed. To do so, they need the Mercury to take a loss. Regardless of who ends up in the higher seed and claims home court advantage, the Lynx are more likely to play the Mercury than any other team.

It’s a great night for WNBA basketball and your League Pass should be open all evening, but here are the games that will have the most impact on the Lynx.

Sparks at Mystics, 6 p.m., NBATV

Apparently, the Mystics would really like to take a break from basketball. They’ve been on a tear as of late, gunning for the No. 2 seed currently held by Atlanta. Washington has won seven games in a row, the longest active streak in the WNBA.

The Sparks are also fighting for position. They’re currently tied with the Sun and working to move up to the No. 4 seed and earn a first-round bye.

While neither of these teams hold seeds that the Lynx have the ability to overtake, there’s a definite reason (outside of hating the Sparks) to root for the Mystics. The Mercury, who the Lynx need to lose to have a chance at moving up to No. 6, play the Dream later tonight. If the Mystics win, it puts even more pressure on the Dream to beat the Mercury to hold onto their No. 2 seed. Minnesota wants to see a locked-in Atlanta team tonight, and the best way to ensure that might be a Washington victory.

Here’s to hoping Elena Delle Donne and Co. can get the job done.

Dream at Mercury, 9 p.m., League Pass 

This is a big one! After dropping a heartbreaker to the Chicago Sky earlier in the week, the Lynx no longer control their own destiny in earning the right to play one of two potential single-elimination games at home. They need the Mercury to lose.

As I mentioned, the Dream are one of the hottest teams in the league, so it’s certainly possible that the Lynx get a break tonight. Phoenix has been leaning heavily on their three stars: Diana Taurasi, Brittney Griner and DeWanna Bonner all season, and hasn’t really found a way to get much production from outside that core, so a key for the Dream will be slowing down or stopping at least one of those three.

The Lynx have performed well against the Mercury this season, and have beaten them on the road, but the team would certainly rather play a playoff game at home. Lynx fans should try out being Atlanta fans for the night.

BONUS: Aces at Wings, 7 p.m., League Pass

This game has no bearing on the Lynx’s playoff seeding, but it’s got the makings of a classic. The Aces and Wings are in a tie for the eighth and final seed in the playoffs. Whoever wins this game has the upper hand in earning the spot. It will overlap with the Lynx game a little, but when Minnesota is finished beating the Sun (knock on wood), flip over to this one. I promise you won’t regret it.