Dallas Wings (9-18) at Seattle Storm (10-16)
Date: Wednesday, August 31
Time: 9:00 PM (CT)
Television: WNBA League Pass
Wings: Karima Christmas, Plenette Pierson, Courtney Paris, Odyssey Sims, Skylar Diggins
Storm: Alysha Clark, Breanna Stewart, Crystal Langhorne, Jewell Loyd, Sue Bird
The Wings and Storm wrap up their regular season series with a Wednesday night matchup at Seattle’s KeyArena. Dallas has won the two previous games versus the Storm, an 88-79 victory in Arlington and an 83-78 win at Seattle.
Karima Christmas and Aerial Powers combined for 14 of Dallas’s 31 points in the third quarter of the Wings victory in Arlington on June 16. The Wings outscored the Storm 31-19 in the third frame to change a 2-point halftime deficit to a 10-point lead.
Powers was a factor again two weeks later in Seattle, scoring a team-high 19 points in the Wings victory. Center Courtney Paris notched her fifth double-double of the season (and second versus Seattle) with 12 points and 12 rebounds.
In the playoff race, the Wings currently stand at 11th place in the league standings but are only 1.5 games behind the eighth place Storm. Seattle’s 10-16 record is tied with the Washington Mystics for the final playoff spot.
Guard Odyssey Sims scored 22 points on Sunday afternoon in a loss to the Chicago Sky. The 3rd-year guard is averaging a team-high 14.5 points per game and has reached the 20-point mark three times this season. She ranks 16th in the league and 10th amongst guards in scoring.
Over the last three games, forward Plenette Pierson is averaging 5 assists per game and has led the team in assists twice, at Atlanta (7) and versus Chicago (6). In that span, she ranks seventh in the league and third amongst forwards.
What the Wings are saying…
Assistant coach Bridget Pettis on the playoff push: “It’s so important to make up those games. It’s do or die for us now, which might be good because we are young and we just need to push through. I know we’re giving it, but we’ve got to give it more consistently. Teams are playing better now that they are more mature. I think we’ll be ready.”
Pettis on rookie Aerial Powers: “AP is free to play. We just let her go out there and display her talent with the work that she has been putting in. We’re pretty confident with AP.”
Pettis on the Wings passing game: “It’s everything we’ve been stressing. That ball needs to touch at least three to four players’ hands. When we have that happen, we score. But that is maturity. The teams in the league that are sharing the basketball are the experienced teams. That’s what we keep teaching and preaching.”
Assistant coach Ed Baldwin on Seattle: “We need to win this game. Seattle is playing so much better. They recently beat Los Angeles and were up against Minnesota. They are young players. They’ve had the top draft pick the last few years and got impact players like Jewel Loyd and Breanna Stewart. Stewart is as good as any player in the league. We have our work cut out for us. We just have to play them like we did the last time. We’ve got to make shots. It’s hard to win when you shoot 25 percent. We’ve improved and we really need to step up more because we need this game.”