Las Vegas Aces’ title defence to A’ja Wilson’s stellar show: Events expected to headline WNBA playoffs
Las Vegas Aces kicked off their title defence with a win against Chicago Sky in Game 1.
The Connecticut Sun clinched a resounding win against the Minnesota Lynx in Game 1 of the first-round series of this season’s WNBA. The first match of the best-of-three quarterfinals, kicked off with Minnesota at Connecticut. Las Vegas Aces, on the other hand, started their title defence with a win against Chicago Sky in Game 1. The Aces have been brilliant so far, conceding just six defeats in the 40-game season. Defending the championship this season will make the Aces the first side since the Los Angeles Sparks in 2001 and 2002 to win back-to-back two WNBA titles. The best-of-five semifinals will start from September 24 and the finals are scheduled to start from October 8.
In this article we take a look at all details about this season’s WNBA playoffs:
The WNBA playoffs comprises three rounds- first-round, semifinals and the WNBA Finals. Teams will take part in a best-of-three series in the first round. The semifinals and WNBA Finals will be a best-of-five series.
A look at first-round matches
Apart from the Aces, New York Liberty is another heavyweight who will vie for the championship. In Game 1, the Liberty will be up against the Washington Mystics. Meanwhile, Connecticut Sun have clearly been the third-best team of the league. They have already defeated the Lynx in the first game of the first-round. Dallas Wings and Atlanta Dream will be facing each other in the final series.
Players in focus
Reigning MVP A’ja Wilson will certainly be a key figure in the playoffs. The star forward has been in sensational form for the Aces. “It’s resilience. We try to hang on to one another. Man down, man up, and that’s the approach we took. Who the hell can do what Candace Parker does? No one. Whoever is in that locker room, we go together,” the two-time MVP was quoted as saying by news agency AP.
Breanna Stewart will be another player who is expected to put up stunning numbers in the playoffs. Having spent her entire WNBA career in Seattle, the power forward signed for the New York Liberty during the offseason. Stewart capped off the regular season being second in the league in scoring. The 29-year-old averaged a career-best 23 points and guided the Liberty to the second-best record in the league.
The Aces have been clear favorites setting league records with 34 wins, 11 100-point games and 25 double-digit victories. The Aces even led the WNBA in terms of offensive rating (113.0.) and defensive rating (97.7) as well. Though, one should not rule out New York Liberty. Many have already predicted the Liberty to reach the WNBA Finals, setting up a potential clash against the Aces.