Liberty news is slow, but that’s the way it is.
Deposits are being taken for Liberty Season Tickets. Not that they’re going to sell out of them, but it’s always nice to get a jump.
A nice article on Becky Hammon (everybody’s favorite former Belle) from ESPN. It’s a little fawning, but then again, Hammon’s making a serious case for MVP and may lose out simply because Lauren Jackson is the major reason that Seattle was in the playoffs as opposed to 7-27. Or is the MVP the same thing as the Peak Performer of the year? Someone get back to me…
A former Lib intern is now an assistant Coach at Longwood. Props, and try to make sure the head coach plays more than eight players on a regular basis.
But the WNBA marches on, with or without the Liberty in the Finals…
Phoenix scammed San Antonio in a close sweep (oxymoronic, I know), while Detroit had problems with Indiana, but ultimately resolved it in three. Am I killer, or what?
So, it’s come down to this… the best in the West and the beast in the East, or, that would be how I phrased it if the WNBA hadn’t already put it up on their website. Instead, I will refer to them as the Adroit from Detroit and the Mean Chicks from Phoenix.
Each couldn’t play a more different game. Detroit focuses on a team-first approach, playing a long bench while also focusing on some superb (if not super-star) starters, passing the ball, playing good defense, and relying on their small game to overcome their lack of strength from beyond the arc. Phoenix, meanwhile, plays a balls-to-the-wall offense with little attitude towards their own end, and now that their whole team has awoken and begun to play together, their points up front definitely make up for their defensive ineptitude. Who will win?
Detroit took the season series, defeating the Mercs in a close 87-84 match in June and a month later by the more dominating tune of 111-82. Both came before Phoenix’s rise from the ashes of defenseless mediocrity.
Phoenix has since exploded, going 16-3 and sweeping both the Storm and Silver Stars in the playoffs. Will the Shock be the next S team that they dominate in the playoff?
For my money, the leaders on the Phoenix are definitely the better basketball players. Taurasi? Money in the bank. Pondexter? Already constructing a statue of her. Taylor? The mere mention of her name brings ecstasy to the minds of many. Smith? Like a ball of raging flame and fire, burning deeply across the night sky. They’re top five players combine for a total of almost 90 points a game. That’s twenty more than the entire Shock team combined.
But the team game is decidedly Detroit’s. Look beyond the Merc’s top five and you’ll see one player averaging 6 points a game and little else. They’re as top-heavy as a San Fernando Valley Porn Star, and Detroit is adept at taking apart those kind of offenses. More balanced teams like New York (admittedly, still needing another star-quality player) can give them problems, as the Shock’s focus becomes defused, but Detroit can play a full 40 on their first half tank alone, not to mention their ladies-in-waiting.
It’s a 5-game series, but the games are scheduled loosely, with all but one match-up including two-days’ rest. That will have to work in Phoenix’s favor. It’s going to be hard for them to play their top five as hard as they have without running out of gas. Detroit is built for the long-haul, however, as evidenced by their success even without Cheryl Ford. Even if Phoenix gives them trouble in the first game, the Shock are adaptable enough to pick up their nuances and give them a run later in the series (see their series victories over Indiana and our own Belles). Gotta be honest: I would not want to be in the Mercs shoes right now.
My Pick: The Shock in Four.
The first game is on Wednesday. Make sure to buy extra Depends. You’ll need it.
See ya, Space Cowboy…