Bet the WNBA Saturday: O'Sullivan picks the Chicago Sky at Indiana Fever, Los Angeles Sparks at Minnesota Lynx
When I picked the over 168.5 in the Seattle/Atlanta game, I reasoned there was no way the Dream would only score 10 points in the fourth quarter again. And I was right: they scored 17. (sigh) (The Storm also scored 17. My Lord.) I also reasoned Atlanta wouldn’t shoot 11.5% from 3 again. And, I was right again; the Dream shot 22.2%. Almost double, whoo-hoo! (sigh)
As for the second part of my money line parlay, well…I told you the Dallas Wings were becoming a dangerous team! (sigh) Turns out everything I wrote about Dallas was dead-on, but that stuff about Phoenix fighting hard and hyped not to lose two in a row, well…hm, that was, er, less than accurate. Maybe it’s just me, but I think a team that has a 6’ 7” Brittney Griner shouldn’t be out-rebounded by 40-29, including giving up 12 offensive rebounds. But I’m demanding that way. (sigh)
(Channeling an embarrassed Max Fischer in "Rushmore") “Well, moving on…”
Seattle O’Sullivan so far: 20-13
Chicago Sky at Indiana Fever, 1 pm EDT
The Pick: Indiana +10.5 (-110)
Indiana’s the worst team in the league, and it’s not particularly close; their overall point differential is -15.0. But the Fever’s offensive rating (93.0) is as good as the Sky’s (92.9); it’s their defensive rating that forces one to hold one’s nose. But, Indiana’s point differential at home over four games is only -4.0. Chicago has played four road games; the Sky’s point differential in those games is +3.5. But, but, BUT…Indiana’s finally coming home after a five-game road trip that started 16 days ago. Even though Chicago did just pound them by 16, I think it’s safe to say the Fever will be happy to be playing in their own gym once again, and Chicago certainly isn’t above taking its opponent lightly. I’ll take the points.
Los Angeles Sparks at Minnesota Lynx, 8 pm EDT
The Pick: Minnesota ML (-480)
Without the Ogwumike sisters, the Sparks still continue to struggle offensively. Their offensive rating is the WNBA’s worst, they score the second-fewest points in the league, their FG% is second-worst, and they get to the free-throw line at the third-lowest rate. Oof. Their defense is pretty good, third in the league. Before you think their defense slows the game down enough to balance all that rock-throwing, however, please be informed their pace/40 minutes is a mere .13 slower than the Lynx. No, it’s not rocket science – Los Angeles just can’t shoot the ball. Uh, not that the Lynx are great or anything, but they do score 5.3 more points per game than the Sparks. Both Los Angeles and Minnesota are 3-2 in their last five games, but Minnesota’s schedule has been tougher, including an overtime win over Connecticut. Given I still consider the WNBA to currently be a two-tier league, with Las Vegas, Seattle, and Connecticut (Ooh! Ooh! And Dallas!) to be on that top tier, a win over one of those teams is worth something, as is being at home. The spread’s a little too much, but I’ll put a little something on the Lynx money line.
Enjoy your Saturday. I’m off to get a taste of the Dallas Wings winning the WNBA Championship at +5500…