The WNBA playoffs kicked off Sunday with a pair of surprises, one on the court, one off the court.
The big news was that Game 1 of the Seattle Storm vs the Minnesota Lynx was postponed due to “inconclusive” COVID-19 tests on unnamed Storm players, becoming the first playoff game in any American sport canceled due to coronavirus concerns. Not great, Bob. The game was rescheduled for tonight at 9:00 “if the situation is resolved.” Ominous words. Fingers crossed. FINALLY around 1:00 EDT, “The players in question underwent extensive additional testing and have been cleared to rejoin the team.”
WE GOT BASKETBALL!
The other Sunday semi-final was a blowout. Although I bet the Aces (most people did), I did note “don’t sleep on the Sun” despite their #7 seed. Led by point guard Jasmine Thomas’ 31 points, Connecticut comprehensively foot stomped Las Vegas 87-62 in a game that wasn’t even that close. It was the worst loss of the year for the Aces, who just could not shoot and had no answer for the two Thomases (Alyssa and Jasmine), who had 48 between them. Facing an elimination game, the Aces and MVP A’Ja Wilson need to respond or they’ll be having a super disappointing end to what’s been (up until Sunday) a tremendous season. They will have to ball out to stay in this series. Vegas remains the -5 favorite (o160.5) but again, this is a TOUGH game to pick, but Bill Laimbeer, coach of the Aces, is 5-1 in the series after losing the opening game.
THE PICK: O160.5
Since the Storm-Lynx game was postponed, the only thing that’s changed (barring any positive COVID-19 tests) is that Sylvia Fowles has had more time to get healthy, which is good for Minnesota. I’ll reprint what I wrote before the postponed Sunday game, because it still stands now. The new Seattle line opened is -8.5 (o163). The Lynx have been led all year by Dangerfield, the lowest drafted player to ever win Rookie of the Year. They also get Sylvia Fowles back for this series, which is a HUGE addition. She'll add to a potent offense led by Odyssey Sims, Rachel Banham, Napheesa Collier and Damiris Dantas. This team is no joke, and as Cheryl Reeve just won her 3rd WNBA Coach of the Year award, you know they’ll be prepared. But Seattle is just so damn good. While the Storm have benefited greatly from the spectacular return of Breanna Stewart, this team lives and dies by Sue Bird and her gimpy knee. Storm missed a ton of time this season, and in almost every game she missed, the Storm struggled. Jewell Lloyd has been solid and Natasha Howard has been good as well. Alysha Clark has played lock down defense all year.
THE PICK: Lynx +8.5
If you’re in Pennsylvania, go to the Barstool Sportsbook to get your bets in and join the Over Club for one of those sweet jackets. You can track Dave, Dan and Marty’s bets and either tail or fade and do so much more.
Let’s get back on the winning train (2-3 in the playoffs) with a pair of wins tonight! And as always, let these women make money for you.