Sparks on the Move
Posted June 24, 2011 11:45 AM
Two straight wins for Phoenix and three in a row for the Sparks has both teams on the up-and-up. Meanwhile, Tulsa and Washington remain on the lookout for a few more wins.
Let's see how the rest of the teams match up in this week's installment of power rankings.
|2011 WNBA.com POWER RANKINGS: 6/24|
|TEAM (last week)||W / L||NOTES|
Tally two more wins in the 'W' column for Minnesota after they cruised past Atlanta in a home-and-home series last weekend. Rebekkah Brunson's play remains an obvious factor in the team's success. So much so that Seimone Augustus has joined Brunson's All-Star campaign. Friday's rematch against Seattle is bound to be an exciting one.
Upcoming Games: 6/24 at Seattle, 6/26 vs. Indiana, 6/30 at Tulsa
San Antonio (2)
One loss without Sophia Young in the lineup is not going to bump the Silver Stars out of the Top 3. Even without Young, who sat out due to an illness, San Antonio managed to keep the score close against Phoenix thanks to 28 points from Becky Hammon and 22 from rookie Danielle Adams. The Sparks and Dream have their hands full this weekend.
Upcoming Games: 6/24 vs. Los Angeles, 6/26 at Atlanta, 6/28 at Chicago
It's hard enough losing a game to a conference rival, but doing so in double-overtime makes it all the more discouraging. The Sun's three game win streak came to an end Thursday night but they're still standing tall in the East. Renee Montgomery's 33 points, including six of eight from downtown, is a sure sign that she's heating up from outside the arc this season.
Upcoming Games: 6/25 at Indiana, 6/28 vs. Los Angeles, 7/1 vs. Seattle
Los Angeles (7)
Candace Parker's 21 points and 13 rebounds against the New York Liberty on Tuesday set the pace for a Sparks 96-91 Sparks win. Not only was the game an exciting one, but for Parker to play the way she did in the league's 15th Anniversary Game is further proof of how far the players have come since the 1997 inaugural tip. Should be an interesting rematch against New York on Sunday.
Upcoming Games: 6/24 at San Antonio, 6/26 at New York, 6/28 at Connecticut
A back injury to Katie Douglas caused her to leave early in Sunday's loss to Phoenix and sit out for Tuesday's win over Washington. She'll return soon enough, but until then the Fever can rely on Shavonte Zellous. She stepped up big with 21 points on 7-of-9 shooting against the Mystics. Coach Lin Dunn has to be happy knowing she can rely on her bench players to replace an injured starter.
Upcoming Games: 6/25 vs. Connecticut, 6/26 at Minnesota, 6/28 vs. Phoenix
It took two overtimes to do it, but the Sky managed to slip past the Sun Thursday night by the final of 107-101. What's more impressive than the combined 208 points is the overall play from Sylvia Fowles, Epiphanny Prince and Tamera Young to help Chicago edge out the win. Courtney Vandersloot also registered her first career double-double with 14 points and 10 assists.
Upcoming Games: 6/25 vs. Phoenix, 6/28 vs. San Antonio, 7/1 at Phoenix
The Seattle Storm is currently last in the league in points per game with 70 per but is also limiting opponents to a league-low 71.4. The 74-50 loss to Los Angeles was reminiscent of the team's shooting struggles against Minnesota on June 9. Depending on the health of Lauren Jackson (currently day-to-day with a hip strain), the road ahead can potentially be a bumpy one for the Storm.
Update: Jackson will miss up to three weeks with a labrial tear in her left hip.
Upcoming Games: 6/24 vs. Minnesota, 7/1 at Connecticut, 7/3 at Washington
Two straight wins has Phoenix jumping up a few spots in this week's power rankings. Diana Taurasi is starting to catch fire but the play of Candice Dupree and Penny Taylor should not be overlooked either. Dupree is averaging 16.6 points and 12.6 rebounds per game, while Taylor is currently second on the team in scoring with 17 ppg.
Upcoming Games: 6/24 at Atlanta, 6/25 at Chicago, 6/28 at Indiana
New York (8)
The Liberty was fortunate enough to snap a recent string of four straight losses on Thursday but they did so against the struggling Shock. The rematch against Los Angeles on Sunday should be a nice way to measure New York's ability to get back on the right track.
Upcoming Games: 6/26 vs. Los Angeles, 6/30 at Atlanta, 7/1 vs. San Antonio
Consecutive losses to Minnesota last weekend isn't going to propel the Dream into a higher spot on these rankings yet, but a strong game against Chicago on Tuesday at least has them in the right state of mind to make a jump next time around. Getting by without Sancho Lyttle in the lineup is going to be tough.
Upcoming Games: 6/24 vs. Phoenix, 6/26 vs. San Antonio, 6/30 vs. New York
Injuries crept up early in the season for the Mystics and it shows in the standings. One hope the team can bank on is that they get the injury bug out of the way now in time to make a healthy run toward the midway point of the season. Sunday's game against Tulsa provides an opportunity to halt a four-game skid.
Upcoming Games: 6/26 vs. Tulsa, 7/3 vs. Seattle, 7/5 at Chicago
Kudos again to Tulsa for picking up that first win against Washington last Friday, but there's still a lot of work that needs to be done. At 1-7 the Shock cannot afford to dig themselves into a bigger hole. Especially not in a tough Western Conference. Wins have to start coming soon or else Tulsa may very well be one its way out of the playoff picture by the All-Star break.
Upcoming Games: 6/26 at Washington, 6/30 vs. Minnesota, 7/8 vs. Phoenix