WNBA Saturday: O'Sullivan (5-0 Friday) picks Sun at Fever, Mystics at Liberty, Lynx at Mercury
5-0, including two parlay wins. How’s that for some courage, folks?
Seattle O’Sullivan so far: 52-40-1
Connecticut Sun at Indiana Fever, 1 pm EDT
The Pick: Connecticut (-1400), Indiana +14.5 (-110)
Since I’m riding high off “stupid parlay” wins, I’ll try a “stupid middle” today. In their game on Thursday, Connecticut was never in danger of losing, but Indiana did play hard. They always play hard at home - they’re 4-5 against the spread, which is certainly better than their 1-16 overall record. But the Sun are just too strong in the frontcourt. Jonquel Jones is the MVP candidate, but Brionna Jones scored 34 on Thursday (Jonquel had 19). Their other starting forward, DeWanna Bonner, is scoring 14.8 points per game. Connecticut’s just too strong for Indiana up front, so I don’t see them losing, but in the second game of a two-game set, I can see them easing off the gas a bit. Middle me this.
Washington Mystics at New York Liberty 1 pm EDT
The Pick: Washington +1.5 (-108), Washington (+105)
Simply put, New York has not impressed me lately, even when they’ve won. They’re 3-7 in their last 10 games (3-7 ATS) and they’ve lost three of four. That one victory, 101-78 over Atlanta, was really more an indication of how bad the Dream can be, rather than how good the Liberty can be - trust me, as I had picked Atlanta and watched while pulling my hair out. New York is too reliant on the three-point shot. In that win over Atlanta, they shot 40.6%; in the loss three days later, they shot 37.5%. They shoot 28.6 threes per game. The only team that shoots more per game is Washington. But the Mystics don’t rely on the three. They have Tina Charles, who dominates down low, so the three-point shot for Leilani Mitchell is wide-open. No one’s figured this out in the weeks I’ve been watching. I’m going with my revolutionary “Best Player on the Floor Gambling Theory” and backing Charles, and the Mystics. I’ll put a little more on them to cover to, uh, cover my bases.
Minnesota Lynx at Phoenix Mercury, 10 pm EDT
The Pick: Phoenix (-150)
In their last meeting on Wednesday, Phoenix star Diana Taurasi shot 2-14 (1-8 from 3). As I had bet on the Mercury, clearly this was a personal attack. But I’m willing to forget all about it in the spirit of harmony. I’m also willing to bet Taurasi won’t be that bad again today. I’m also willing to bet, well, willing to hope anyway, that Mercury head coach Sandy Brondello will have her team try to get a hand in Lynx guard Kayla McBride’s face when she’s beyond the arc, so she doesn’t score a season-high 26 points (5-7 from that arc) again. I mean, that might be nice. Minnesota shot 50.7% from the field on Wednesday (normally they shoot 44.6%). I think they’ll come back to Phoenix a bit in this ending game of two straight against the Mercury.