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First round of WNBA playoffs in the books

Basketball

The GIST: The first round of the WNBA playoffs is in the books, but hold off on that manicure — two more single elimination games are up next.

September 24, 2021
SOURCE: ALEX LIVESEY - FIFA/FIFA VIA GETTY IMAGES
SOURCE: ALEX LIVESEY - FIFA/FIFA VIA GETTY IMAGES

⬅️Last night: In a battle of experience vs. youth, the experience prevailed, with the No. 6 Chicago Sky defeating the No. 7 Dallas Wings 81–64. Kahleah Copper led the way with 23 points while Sky star Candace Parker notched a double-double in her first playoff game with her hometown squad.

  • The No. 5 Phoenix Mercury — even without Diana Taurasi —  won the late game, defeating the No. 8 NY Liberty 8382. With less than five seconds left, the Liberty’s Betnijah Laney tied the game, but the Mercury’s Brianna Turner made the winning free throw with just 0.4 seconds on the clock. Insane.

➡️What’s next: Round two begins Sunday at 3 p.m. ET with the Mercury facing the defending champs No. 4 Seattle Storm. It’s still TBD whether Storm star (and 2020 Finals MVP) Breanna Stewart will play after missing the last two regular season games with a foot injury, but we’d never bet against the Storm’s other stars: Jewell Loyd and Sue Bird.

Sunday’s second game is set for 5 p.m. ET and will feature the Sky vs. the No. 3 Minnesota Lynx. Watch for recently crowned AP Defensive Player of the Year Sylvia Fowles to lead a shutdown Lynx squad. Is it tip-off time yet?