THE CHAMPS! The Mercury dominated this year and if they barring any injury they will do it again next year. Everyone thought they would win it all last season but Brittney Griner needed time to adjust and she had a nagging injury. I would say this team was fun to watch but you all know that I hate blowouts, I hope the rest the rest of the league can catch up! This team is special and had so many weapons, the organization was smart in getting Diana Taurasi and Candice Dupree to sign extensions. As long as they can keep this group together we may see them repeat.
I cannot give enough praise for this team. They are lethal beast and become even more dangerous as Maya Moore gets better. The Lynx were bothered by the injury bug this season and they were still one game away from making it to the Finals for the fourth time in a row. As long as they can keep this group together they will be a force to be reckoned with. The Lynx were not as dominant the Mercury but they ran through their share of the league as well. It may be a rematch next season between the Lynx and Mercury to get to the Finals again. Whatever the case may be I look forward to seeing them put on more clinics next season.
This season I was blessed with the opportunity to go to the home opener and final home game. Both were great experiences and I hope to go to more next season! We all heard the news when Becky Hammon was hired as an assistant coach for the San Antonio Spurs, I just might attend the Dallas Mavericks game when they are in town to catch her in action. Kayla McBride and Danielle Robinson are the future of this team, I do believe they need more of an inside presence. I am not sure how many seasons Sophia Malcolm- Young and Jayne Appel have in them. Also Danielle Adams could be a great success in the least if she worked on her conditioning some more. She becomes a defensive liability when she gets tired, but that shot is nice! This was also a scrappy team and they were not afraid of anyone, beating the Lynx and the Mercury this season. I am looking forward to seeing how they will do without their floor general. Robinson is so fast, but you noticed a change in her game this season I see her making even more improvements to help this team make a deeper run in the West.
Oh what a ride my team took me on this season. It was such an emotional roller coaster. First we need a real coach! I think they should have let Carol Ross finish the season, unless there was something going on that we were not privy to. My Sparks have so much talent on the roster but none of them had the consistent killer instinct. I cannot be just Candace Parker one night, Nneka Ogwumike they next and Kristi Toliver the time after that. We need good games from all of them consistently. I love my Sparks and I am not a fair weather fan. I really would like for us to compete in the West because when we are own we can beat anybody. I look forward to see what coach the organization chooses. I am not sure how many of you all read that article about Kristi Toliver I posted in August, but I feel like next season will be her last especially if they are not winning. Anyway I am not sure what to expect with this team until they find a coach, then I will at least know what type of identity they will have. I pray next season is better than this one, it was so hard for me.
The Storm is a very tough team and at times they showed that they can compete with anybody. There were just too many nights where the offense was not clicking for them. I liked the acquisition of Crystal Langhorne but they need a little more. They a couple more scorers and some fresh legs. I really think they should have kept Bria Hartley but they would have been even more vulnerable in the paint. If Lauren Jackson is able to return next season they will be just fine, but if not I hope they can find a player to replace. I will would like to see the Bird/Jackson tandem one last night though!
Even though they only won 12 games this season, the Shock were one of my favorite teams to watch. They lost a lot of close games. I made a bold prediction at the beginning of the semester that the Shock would make the playoffs and they almost did! Fred Williams knows what it takes to get a team to the playoffs and I think they will do it next year. I LOVED the emergence of Skylar Diggins, the fire she plays with just makes this team exciting to watch. Next season Riquana Williams should be able to contribute more, but this team is solid. I will not expect Liz Cambage to come back next season either, which sucks for the Shock because they could have a different high profile player. Courtney Paris was big time for them this season on the boards, I would really like for her to expand her game and not rely so much on her size. When she gets tired she becomes a defensive liability, but she did some good work for the team. Odyssey Sims was so close to winning Rookie of the Year but I think she will have an outstanding second season. With Diggins and Sims on the outside and Glory Johnson on the inside this team is going to be very dangerous; Williams just has to find the formula for them to get over the hump.
I just knew that the Dream would be back in the finals, but when coach Michael Cooper under which his surgery, the team lost a bit of its stride. The key for this team is to make sure they can resign Erika de Souza. They will definitely need her next season in order to return to the finals. How about Shoni Schimmel taking the league by storm! I am so thankful for her and the new demographic of fans she has brought to the league. Road games felt like home games because they had Schimmel. We all remember her EPIC performance from at the All-Star game and she is only going to get better. I think we will see her starting for the Dream next season. She can go off any night and that shot is ssoooo sweet! I really enjoyed Angel McCoughtry’s growth this season as a leader, Cooper was the perfect coach to bring the best out of her. It will be a battle in the East next season as all teams have the potential to take the crown.
There are a couple of followers that come to mind whenever I post about the Fever. You guys are so loyal and I LOVE IT. Of course we all know this was coach Lin Dunn’s final season as head coach, but she will still be working as consultant next season. I am excited to see what Stephanie White will do with the team and how Natalie Achonwa will fit in. I think they will have two beast in the middle with Achonwa and Erlana Larkins. Larkins kept them in a lot of games by working hard on those boards. I wonder how many more seasons Tamika Catchings has in her, she missed half the regular season with back problems. I hope to see Catch play one more time before she retires. She came back this seasons strong and played hard but her shot looked different to me, it appeared as if she lost a little bit of lift in her shot. I enjoy watching the Fever because they are scrappy and you can never count them out when they are down. Shavonte Zellous can be a beast in this league, you just never know what you are going to get. They were one game away from the finals, with a new coach and the addition of Achonwa I expect them to compete them again.
This group has been getting better each season under Mike Thibault. This was also one of the youngest teams in the league that had plenty of ups and downs throughout the season. However, with a year under their belt and possibly some overseas play, Bria Hartley and Stefanie Dolson are the future of this team. Ivory Latta’s passion alone can will a team to some wins, but it is going to take more than that. Hartley needs to be more consistent in her scoring but that will come in time just as it did for Latta. Hopefully Hartley and Dolson’s experience with USA basketball will help them out too. They also need more of an inside presence, hopefully they will be able to draft that key piece. Also Taylor Hill will return for a full season next year. I look for the Mystics to be back in the playoffs next season making an even deeper run.
The Sky went through soo much adversity this season and still managed to make it to the finals for the first time in franchise history. I seriously thought they had a chance against the Mercury, it was a small chance but still a chance. I expected more for Sylvia Fowles and Elena Delle Donne’s back injury was the nail in the coffin. I can admire how she was determined to compete and play through the pain. The Sky have a really good group and Allie Quigley was quite the surprise this season. Epiphanny Prince needs to share the wealth a little bit, there were a few times where she was just looking for her own shot, not letting plays develop. Fowles needs to continue to work on keeping her emotions in check when she does not get the whistle. It goes to her head and takes her out of the game. I pray that EDD stays healthy, because if she does this team is very dangerous. I can see them getting back to the finals next season.