Sun take to the Sky on Friday
The Connecticut Sun have earned the WNBA playoff berth they coveted.
Now the Sun are playing for a home game.
Connecticut has won five in a row and needs to keeping winning to improve its seeding. It plays its final regular-season road game at the Chicago Sky on Friday night in this weekend's home-and-home series (Wintrust Arena, NBCSB, 9).
Seven teams have clinched playoff berths — the Seattle Storm (23-8), Atlanta Dream (20-10), Washington Mystics (19-11), Los Angeles Sparks (18-12), Connecticut (17-12), the defending champion Minnesota Lynx (17-13), and Phoenix Mercury (16-14).
The Dallas Wings (14-15), Las Vegas Aces (12-18), and Chicago (10-19) are vying for the final spot.
There's a huge benefit to being one of the top two seeds as they get a double-bye (and rest) to the best-of-five semifinals.
The bottom four seeds play in the opening round. The winners play the third and fourth seeds in the second round. Both rounds are single elimination.
The Sun cannot catch Seattle. It’ll be tough for them to catch Atlanta, too, as the latter won the head-to-head tiebreaker.
The Dream, however, took a huge hit Tuesday when All-Star Angel McCoughtry suffered a season-ending knee injury against the Las Vegas Aces. She was Atlanta’s second-leading scorer (16.5) and rebounder (6.0) and also averaged 1.3 steals.
Connecticut would move into fourth place with a win Friday because it holds the tiebreaker over the Sparks. The teams conclude their season series at Mohegan Sun Arena on the last day of the regular season (Aug. 19).
The Sun split their season series with the Mystics, who’ll play host to Los Angeles on Aug. 17.
Connecticut beat the Lynx twice to win the season series. The Sun will host their third game on Aug. 17.
Minnesota also plays host to Washington on Aug. 19.
Phoenix holds the head-to-head tiebreaker over Connecticut. It also plays host to Los Angeles on Sunday.
The Sun have a 3 1/2-game lead over Dallas and won the season series.
Chicago was crushed by Connecticut in the teams' only meeting, 110-72 (June 1), but Sky starters Stefanie Dolson (center) and Allie Quigley (guard) both missed that game due to injuries.
Quigley, who won her second straight WNBA All-Star 3-point contest in late July, has averaged a team-high 16.1 points. Point guard Courtney Vandersloot (12 ppg) leads the league in assists (8.4).
The Sun have scored 90-or-more points their last five games, a franchise record. They’re the only team in the league with five players averaging 10-or-more points — Chiney Ogwumike (14.4 ppg, 7.3 rpg), Jasmine Thomas (12.7 ppg, 4.6 apg), Courtney Williams (12.6 ppg, 6.2 rpg), Alyssa Thomas (10.7 ppg, 8.3 rpg, 4.3 apg, 1.2 spg), and Jonquel Jones (10.4 ppg, 4.9 rpg).
The Sun will play the Sky again Sunday afternoon at Mohegan Sun Arena.
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