WNBA Saturday: O'Sullivan seeks return to winning ways, picks Sun at Sky, Fever at Mystics, Lynx at Wings
(deep breath) Okay, two losing days in a row. That’s no joking matter. Let’s try to right the ship today.
O'Sullivan so far: 32-25
Connecticut Sun at Chicago Sky, 2 pm EDT
The Pick: Connecticut +7.5 (-118)
It should go without saying that Connecticut really misses forward Jonquel Jones. But I’m saying it anyway: Connecticut really misses Jonquel Jones. In Thursday’s first matchup against the Sky, the Sun did fight hard for almost three quarters. Still, then Chicago pulled away, winning 81-75 behind balanced scoring (five players in double-digits) and creative passing from Courtney Vandersloot (leading the WNBA at 8.3 assists per game). Yet the Sun still almost covered the 4.5 point spread. But there was no love lost between the two teams. I think Connecticut doesn’t lie down today. Forward DeWanna Bonner was furious by the end of Thursday’s game. Kaila Charles battled until the end. If Briann January, who was shut out, plays a better game, the Sun can keep it close.
Indiana Fever at Washington Mystics, 7 pm EDT
The Pick: Washington ML (-475)
WNBA leading scorer Tina Charles should be back tonight, and the Washington Mystics need her. Washington pulled off a victory against Atlanta on Thursday but sorely missed Charles’ scoring and veteran leadership. As much as I want to like Indiana more, there’s really not much there. They score the fewest points in the league (74.4) and give up the most (88.4). One of these days, they’ll pull out of this slide, but I’m betting Charles is eager to get right back into the swing of things, so it won’t be tonight. I don’t trust the Mystics laying 9 points, so I’ll stick to the money line.
Minnesota Lynx at Dallas Wings, 8 pm EDT
The Pick: Dallas ML (-165)
Okay, this one’s personal. Dallas simply devastated me when they fell to Minnesota on Thursday, 85-73. They didn’t just devastate me once but twice, falling behind by double-digits early, scratching their way back to actually take the lead early in the third quarter, before devastating me again by falling apart as the Lynx pulled away behind Kayla McBride’s 22 points and Napheesa Collier’s 19. But I want to love again. You may recall my whinging about Dallas’s shooting that night: 34.7%. They usually shoot 41.1%. Minnesota’s FG% that night was 48.5%; they usually shoot 43.6%. I think it was an off-night for the Wings leading scorers Satou Sabally, Marina Mabrey, and Arike Ogunbowale, and I think they rebound, er, rebound by scoring tonight. Although they got outrebounded on Thursday too (40-34) – they need to rebound by rebounding like they usually rebound, when they rebound better than any team in the WNBA (38.8, including 11 offensive rebounds per game). If Dallas keeps Sylvia Fowles off the glass even a little better than Thursday, I think the Wings renew my faith in the world.