Chicago (6-13) at Seattle (9-10)
When: Tuesday, July 18th 2017
Where: Key Arena, Seattle, WA
Time: 9:00 ET | TV: ESPN 2
Opening Odds: Seattle -7/166.5
Two teams that are battling for the final WNBA Playoff spot will meet on Tuesday night as the Seattle Storm host the Chicago Sky at Key Arena. The Storm currently hold down the eighth and final spot, but the Sky are still only three games back with plenty of time left. Chicago, who struggled early on after trading All-Star Elena Delle Donne to Washington in the offseason, had a three-game winning streak snapped Sunday with a 112-106 double-overtime loss at Dallas. Center Stefanie Dolson had a career-high 26 points and 10 rebounds in the loss and was named the Eastern Conference Player of the Week on Monday. Jessica Breland scored a season-high 23 points and Allie Quigley added 22 for Chicago, who also got 10 points, 10 assists, and five steals from point guard Courtney Vandersloot. The Sky are second in the league in field goal defense (41.8%), but can’t seem to keep opponents off the scoreboard, ranking 11th in scoring defense (85.3). Chicago will play Thursday night in Los Angeles against the Sparks to lead into the All-Star Break.
The Storm have the Western Conference’s Player of the Week in Breanna Stewart, who had 24 points, nine rebounds and six assists as the Storm defeated the Dream 90-84 on Saturday at home. Teammate Crystal Langhorne added a season-high 20 points, going a perfect 9-of-9 from the field. Langhorne has made 18 straight field-goal attempts in the past three games, five makes shy of the WNBA record set by Los Angeles’ Nneka Ogwumike last year. The Storm will be looking to win back-to-back games for the first time since late May and reach .500 in their last contest before the All-Star break. Seattle, who averages 81.9 points a game, have scored 89 or more three times over the last six games and are second in the league in field goal percentage at 47.7%. Seattle will start the second half with a game at Los Angeles, a team they upset back on July 8th at Key Arena.
The Storm are shooting much better recently, but they have trouble against Eastern Conference opponents, failing to cover the spread in the last eight games against those teams. That’s a trend I can’t ignore. I’ll take the points in this one.
Pick: Sky +7
HEAD TO HEAD