New York (10-9) at Minnesota (16-2)
When: Tuesday, July 25th 2017
Where: Xcel Energy Center, St Paul, MN
Time: 8:00 ET | TV: ESPN 2
Opening Odds: Minnesota -12.5/160
The New York Liberty begin a tough five-game road trip to open the second half of the WNBA season when they visit the league’s best team – the Minnesota Lynx on Tuesday night. New York dropped five of six games before winning their final two prior to the All-Star Break thanks to a lineup shuffle by coach Bill Laimbeer. Bria Hartley moved into the starting lineup, Epiphany Prince slid over to the shooting guard spot and Sugar Rodgers provided a needed spark off the bench. Laimbeer’s move worked as the Liberty beat the Mystics on July 16th and the bench erupted for 41 points. All-Star Tina Charles is playing at an MVP level, averaging 20.5 points and 9.9 rebounds per game this season. Rodgers, Prince, and Shavonte Zellous all average between 12.1 and 12.4 points on the season. New York is near the bottom of the league in offensive scoring, but are terrific on defense, ranking third in points allowed (79.0) and first in field goal defense (40.3). The Liberty will continue their road trek at Indiana on Friday night.
Minnesota will begin the second half with a three-game lead over the Los Angeles Sparks in the Western Conference and have only dropped two games all season. They beat the Liberty in the first of three meetings back on May 18th – 90-71. All-Star Game MVP Maya Moore and fellow Lynx All-Stars Sylvia Fowles, Seimone Augustus and Rebekkah Brunson are the leaders of this talented team. Moore is as steady as ever, averaging 15.7 points and 3.8 assists per game, but doesn’t need to do much with a terrific surrounding cast. Fowles is a serious MVP candidate, averaging 20.1 points and 9.8 rebounds per game. Augustus is averaging 11.6 points and Brunson is right behind at 10.9 points and 6.7 rebounds. After a shocking road loss to the Chicago Sky (100-76) on July 8th, the Lynx have reeled off three-straight victories including the Phoenix Mercury twice. They will play three of their next four at Xcel Energy Center.
This line is too high for a team like the Liberty who play good defense. They may not have the offensive power to win this game, but the defense will keep it in the single-digits. Take the points.
Pick: Liberty +12.5
HEAD TO HEAD