2004 WNBA Playoffs: Round 1, Game 1
Saturday, Sept. 25, 2004
Storm 70, Lynx 58
Seattle leads 1-0
Recap | Box Score | Notes | Photos | Game Archive
Lynx Coach Suzie McConnell Serio
"This is a very disappointing loss for us. Once again, we didn't start out the game very well and dug ourselves a hole. We were able to make a run and get LJ in foul trouble, but we couldn't take advantage of that. They had other players step up with Lauren off the floor. We couldn't minimize their runs. They have so many weapons on offense that when we were trapping the ball, they could find any number of players who could knock down the open shot."
"We need to get better balance for the next game. I thought inside, both Ohlde and Williams had great games. Our guard play was very inconsistent. Seattle did a really good job of trapping our ballhandlers, and really getting in the way of our passing lanes. They weren't allowing us to get the ball into the post where we wanted it."
"I think fatigue became a factor in the second half. We're going to have to rotate the bench more to keep people fresh. There were a few times where I could see some tired legs when we weren't able to rotate and cover the open person. That allowed them to get a lot of easy baskets in the second half."
"Halfway through the first half, we had a six-point lead and I really liked our chances. Amanda Lassiter came in and was the spark plug that we needed. She hit three 'threes' that really got the team going. Then she picked up three fouls, and even though you don't like to take out the hot hand, I couldn't leave her in there with three fouls in the first half."
"Going into halftime, we talked about how important the first five minutes of the second half was going to be. We knew that they were going to go to Lauren and get her back involved in the game. I thought we came out strong to start, but we weren't able to keep that going for an extended period of time."
"This team has been down before. We know we have a mountain to climb, but we've done it before. We are really in a bind, a tough situation. We have to go win two games on their home floor. I would've liked to have won today, because then we would've had to steal just one on the road. We really have our work cut out for us. We're going to go into Seattle with a nothing-to-lose mentality. We have to be ready and step up to the challenge."
Lynx Center Nicole Ohlde
"Seattle came out and really played hard. We needed to match their intensity, and that wasn't something we were able to do at the beginning of the game. Halfway through the first half, we finally were playing with some intensity and got the lead. We needed to push that lead with Lauren on the bench, and capitalize on that. We weren't able to do that, and I think that went a big way in deciding the outcome of the game."
"I think Lauren is a great player. She made some tough shots tonight. I tried to make her give up the ball, and we were effective at that for the most part. But we had some rotation breakdowns, and she ended up getting a lot of easy shots in the second half."
"It's going to be tough for us. We've won on the road before, and I'm confident that we can do it again. We need to keep scrapping. We can't worry about this game any more. We have to focus and be ready for the next one."
Lynx Forward Svetlana Abrosimova
"Their bench played really tough today. When Lauren was on the bench, it wasn't like 'okay, we need to take the game over', because everybody for them was playing great today. It was a tough game. We expected it to be a tough game. But when their best player was on the bench, we needed to take advantage."
"It was hard to get the momentum back. They really rebounded well. Our offense was based on getting it down low to our post players and get inside, then make an outside shot — but we didn't make those... Nobody has given us a chance, but there is no pressure any more. We just need to go and play hard and hopefully come away with wins."
Lynx Forward Tamika Williams
"You have the MVP of the league with three fouls in the first half, you have to capitalize. You can't be down after the first half. Your top dog goes out with three fouls... They played inspired. They played like she was on the floor. Our eyes have to light up — the first game is a big game. With two of their top players out, you have to produce. You hold Lauren Jackson and Sue Bird to what we held them to, you've got to win."
"Ohlde now has a taste of the playoffs and how they go. A lot of our players have never been there before. Now they have a taste and know what to expect. We rely a lot on Ohlde, but like Katie Smith told me my rookie year, after the All-Star Break, you're no longer a rookie. So you just have to step up."
"We went on a run... When you go on a 13-0 run, you should win the game. Five turnovers in a row are not going to win the game — period, game over. But now we have to go out to Seattle and give it our all."
Storm Coach Anne Donovan
"This was a great game for us. We knew coming in we had to defend better than we did the last time we were here, and I think we were able to do that. We also knew that our bench had to step up. Did I think every player on the bench was going to have a good game? No, but they all did, and they really made an impact when they were on the floor."
"This is a good start to the series for us. Not having Lauren in the first half with the foul trouble, and Betty in the second half because of the concussion, I really think that we were able to maintain our balance and shut them down defensively."
"Our bench was a nice surprise tonight. I knew that they were capable of what they did. They just haven't been showing it lately... We showed a lot of guts in the second half. When Lauren was able to get back in there, the team really continued to play well and we didn't miss a beat."
"In the first half, Minnesota was able to play straight-up defense on us. They were able to trap the ball. That's what not having Lauren on the floor allows other teams to do to us. We really moved the ball well, though, and were able to find the open person for an easy shot off their trap. With Lauren back on the floor in the second half, Minnesota was not as effective with their double-teams. Therefore, their defense wasn't as tough as it was in the first half."
"In the first half when they made their run on us, I thought we showed great composure. The defense dug down and got the stops we needed, and offensively I thought we were really focused. We were able to grab the momentum back and take that into the locker room. That really helped us a lot starting out the second half."
Storm Forward Lauren Jackson
"I'm very happy with the win. We played together as a team, and really came together after I got in foul trouble. It's our first playoff win, and I'm really happy with that. Two years ago it was almost like we didn't have a chance when we played L.A. This year I feel like we earned our spot, just like we earned this win."
"It's going to be tough for us to lose at home. We play really well at KeyArena, and I think we have the best fans in the league. They are really rowdy and wild, and really help us get into the game."
"I thought the team played awesome today. Even though I was on the bench in the first half, I knew I would be back for the second. I just want to win. In the second half, I knew if I just let the game come to me that we would be fine. I'm thankful that my teammates were able to keep the lead until I could come back in."
"The team chemistry is great. It was tough for us getting back after the Olympic break, but after a few good practices, I think we started getting it going again. We haven't peaked yet, but I think we're really close to doing it."
"(Ohlde) is good. I have a lot of respect for her game. She's had a very good season, and I'm very impressed with her."
Storm Guard Sue Bird
"It's a battle every time we play Minnesota. Today it was brought to another level because of the playoffs... It was a really hard-fought win. We came together when we needed to, scored when we needed to, got defensive stops and hung in there when Lauren went out and then with Betty going out."
"(Sam) was awesome. She is the type of player that can really put us on her back when she has to. In the second half, she knew getting to the rim was going to help us and she did that."
"The first half was definitely weird. We were up, then we were down. With about three or four minutes left in the first half, we really wanted to make a push — get a lead and take that into halftime — and then getting Lauren back in the second half would give us a boost."
"We had a game plan and we executed. This was a good win for us. We'll take it no matter how we can get it, but now we have to forget about it and move on to the next game. We get to take it to KeyArena, but now we'll be playing against a team that is basically playing for their lives."