WNBA.com Power Rankings: May 22, 2007

The regular season has tipped off, and every Tuesday we'll have the latest edition of the WNBA.com editorial staff's Power Rankings. Yes, we only have two days' worth of games to go on -- and one team still hasn't taken to the court -- but the season openers have reinforced many of our preconceptions about how things will go in 2007. As expected, Eastern powers Detroit, Indiana and Connecticut still lead the way. In the West, Sacramento, Seattle and Phoenix have each advanced a spot. Take a look, and let us know what you think in our Fan Voice.

2007 WNBA.com POWER RANKINGS: Week 1
TEAM (last week)
1-0 The Shock were far from perfect in their season opener against the Monarchs, but they're still loaded. Although Cheryl Ford and Katie Smith were in foul trouble, Deanna Nolan, Swin Cash and the incredible Plenette Pierson showed that the Shock have both balanced scoring and the killer instinct to win even when they're not at their best.
Upcoming: vs. Minnesota
1-0 Balanced scoring led the way for the Fever, as well, against the hapless Lynx, as they had five players in double figures. You expect it out of Tamika Catchings and Tamika Whitmore... probably even Anna DeForge. But if Tan White can contribute 10-15 a night, this team will be tough to stop.
Upcoming: vs. Los Angeles
3 1-0 A solid opening night win on the road against a Mystics team minus Alana Beard keeps them in the No. 3 spot. Their balanced scoring attack, led by Nykesha Sales, Katie Douglas and Lindsay Whalen, is superb. If Erika DeSouza continues to develop as a presence on the inside, the Sun will be a force to be reckoned with.
Upcoming: at San Antonio, vs. Los Angeles
4 1-1 Yes, they were beaten by a superior team in Detroit, but their domination of Minnesota on Sunday reinstituted -- at least in our minds -- the Monarchs' reign atop the Western Conference. The injury to Ticha Penicheiro is mildly troubling, but the way Kara Lawson stepped up bodes well for the Monarchs in 2007.
Upcoming: at Washington
1-0 A 22-point deficit at home against the Comets definitely had Seattle fans... ahem... sleepless, but the Storm came back in the second half -- including a 28-7 fourth quarter -- behind Lauren Jackson and Iziane Castro Marques to post a 13-point win. With the guard tandem of Sue Bird and Betty Lennox penetrating and scoring, they'll be among the best in the West.
Upcoming: vs. Phoenix, at San Antonio
6 0-0 Yes, the Sparks have fallen two spots. Yes, we know they haven't played yet. But they have three games this week -- including tough matchups against Indiana and Connecticut -- during which they can prove themselves. Another reason for the Sparks' fall? Point guard Temeka Johnson is still recovering from offseason arthroscopic knee surgery and word is she's not yet ready to play.
Upcoming: at Chicago, at Indiana, at Connecticut
7 0-1

The Mystics lost their opener to Connecticut on Saturday, but they hung tight with a good team without their best player, Alana Beard. If Beard is ready to come back and is close to full speed, she'll complete an excellent starting five. The Mystics will be squarely in the playoff chase in the East.
Upcoming: vs. Sacramento, at New York

Phoenix (9)
1-0 The Mercury held serve at home against a solid Silver Stars squad -- say that five times fast -- in a game in which Cappie Pondexter had only four points. Kelly Miller and Kelly Mazzante had 15 and 12, respectively, while Tangela Smith was the force down low Phoenix hoped she'd be when they dealt the rights to Lindsey Harding. The Mercury are on the rise.
Upcoming: at Seattle, vs. Houston
9 0-1 This is a team that has clearly improved over last season, but they still appear to be right on the verge of the playoffs. They lost to Phoenix on the road, but Becky Hammon and Ruth Riley were solid, Sophia Young is still getting better and Marie Ferdinand-Harris is getting used to being back on the court. They'll play better as the season goes on than they did Saturday night.
Upcoming: vs. Connecticut, vs. Seattle
Houston (10)
0-1 The Comets are tough to gauge. They looked amazing in the first 25 minutes of the game, jumping out to a 22-point lead on the Storm behind Sheryl Swoopes, Michelle Snow and impressive rookie Ashley Shields. But from that point on, they couldn't make a shot and were outscored 44-9 over the final 15 minutes. They'll still win their fair share of games, but they'll need to be more consistent on the offensive end.
Upcoming: at Phoenix
New York (12)
1-0 Much like the Storm, the Liberty looked awful in the first half Sunday against Chicago. But they put it together in the second half behind seven 3's and 28 points from Erin Thorn to post a very solid season opening win. The playoffs are still a ways off for the Liberty, but as Loree Moore and Shameka Christon learn to take charge on the court and young posts Jessica Davenport and Tiffany Jackson get up to speed, there's plenty of room for improvement in the Big Apple.
Upcoming: vs. Washington
Chicago (13)
0-1 Chicago had a lot of trouble scoring in the second half Sunday at Madison Square Garden against the Liberty, but they showed a ton of promise in the first. Monique Currie took over for periods of the game, Candice Dupree has the makings of a future star and Armintie Price is going to be fun to watch. Bo Overton has too much talent on his roster not to compete with every team in this league and fight hard in every game. They'll do both.
Upcoming: vs. Los Angeles, at Minnesota
Minnesota (11)
0-2 It was a tough weekend for the Lynx. The Opening Day loss to Indiana wasn't wholly unexpected, though the injury to Seimone Augustus was frightening. Of course, Augustus showed she was just fine, netting 28 in Sunday's loss to Sacramento, but aside from her, where will the points come from? Lindsey Harding was 1-12 from the field against the Monarchs. They play at Detroit tonight. Yikes.
Upcoming: at Detroit, vs. Chicago