The Summitt Slack Summit: Previewing the WNBA Finals

PHOENIX, AZ - SEPTEMBER 17: Candace Parker
PHOENIX, AZ - SEPTEMBER 17: Candace Parker /
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Howard: Interesting to me that we all have it going five. So @splitthepost, let’s start with you: what do you think are the places on the floor where the Sparks can gain that edge?

Ben: Any Chelsea Gray side pick and roll is a problem. Candace Parker can draw plenty of doubles and has all the tools to pass out of them. And if I’m making the case for why LA can win, I’d say Nneka Ogwumike is the best equipped of anyone to make life tough for Fowles.

Howard: What struck me in the Phoenix series, though, was the extent to which LA really couldn’t shut down Griner, even without the other options that Minnesota has around their own center of destruction. Do we think an aggressive Sylvia Fowles is key to this series for the Lynx? Open to the group.

Lindsay: I think aggressive Sylvia Fowles is always the key

I also think she’s replayed Nneka’s offensive rebound on the last play of Game 5 approximately one million times in the last year

Brian Schwartz: When the talent at the top is pretty similar, the difference makers can be the role players. I think Candace, Nneka, Maya and Syl will get theirs, who else will step up? I think Whalen and Montgomery are going to play a big role one way or another.

Erica: Yes, but also an aggressive backcourt. Nneka and Candace were forced to work through foul trouble in the series with Phoenix. Need Whalen and Montgomery to help draw fouls underneath, while also hitting from the perimeter.

Ben: I wouldn’t argue with that at all in seeing how great she’s been as their focal point. We saw against Washington that single coverage just isn’t enough.

Blake: Erica hit what I was thinking. If Minnesota knocks down three pointers with consistency, enough to garner full close outs, I think L.A. will be gasping for breath. In fact, guarantee me the Lynx hit 37% like they did in the regular season and you could talk me into Lynx in 4.

Lindsay: I will say, however, that the Mystics showed a blueprint in the first half of Games 2 and 3 that show there are vulnerabilities if you are really aggressive on defense. The Sparks have the talent and rest to keep that up for four quarters, and will likely not shoot 40 percent or whatever the Mystics shot that series

Howard: Also @bd22 shooting 37 percent against the Sparks different than doing it against the league

Blake: Absolutely! Don’t think it happens, just saying if it does… done-zo