Last Updated: 2017-09-24
WNBA Finals – Los Angeles Sparks at Minnesota Lynx GAME 1
Date/Time: 09-24-2017, 15:30 EDT
Spread: Minnesota Lynx -4.5
In Game 1 of the 2017 WNBA Finals we have last season’s thrilling series rematch, when the top-seeded Minnesota Lynx (27-7) are hosting the second-seeded and defending champions Los Angeles Sparks (26-8) in a best of five series that will determine who will be crowned WNBA champions.
Minnesota Lynx finished the regular season with a league-best 27-7 record. They have six consecutive wins and in the playoffs they eliminated Washington in the semifinals with 3-0 wins. Sylvia Fowles leads the team in scoring with 20 ppg, adding team highs both in rebounds with 10 per game, and in blocks with 1.3 per game. She is followed by Maya Moore and Sheimone Augustus with 19 ppg apiece, with Moore adding a team high 4.7 assists per game.
Los Angeles Sparks finished the regular season with a 26-8 record and were placed second in the league. They have ten consecutive wins and in the playoffs they eliminated Phoenix Mercury in the semifinals with 3-0 wins. Candace Parker leads the team in scoring with 20 ppg, adding 8.7 rebounds per game and team highs both in assists with 6.7 per game and in steals with 2.3 per game. She is followed by Odyssey Sims with 18.3 ppg, while Nneka Ogwumike adds 15.3 ppg and a team high 10 rebounds per game.
This will be the 4th meeting between those two teams this season, with Los Angeles leading 2-1 wins. Minnesota are 17-2 at home, while Los Angeles are 11-7 on the road. Minnesota are better both offensively, scoring a league third-best 85.4 ppg to Los Angeles’ 83.5, and defensively, allowing a league-best 74.2 ppg to Los Angeles’ second-best of 75.2. Los Angeles have a slightly better field goal percentage, shooting with a league-best 48% to Minnesota’s 47.8% (second-best), while Minnesota have a better 3-point percentage, shooting with a second-best 37% to Los Angeles’ 34.2%. Lynx lead the league in assists made, with 20.4 ppg to Sparks’ 18.6, and are better in rebounding, grabbing 35.4 to Sparks’ third-worse of 31.1. Sparks commit less turnovers (13.3 to 14.3). Los Angeles have been extremely hot lately so expect a closer game than 5 points, so pick Los Angeles in this one.
Prediction: Los Angeles Sparks +4.5 (-108)
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