Indiana (12-15) at New York (11-17)
Date: Friday, August 30
Time: 7:30 p.m. (ET)
Site: Prudential Center (Newark, NJ)
Television - NBATV
Radio - None
Webcast - Live webcast and stats can be accessed via WNBA Live Access on FeverBasketball.com.
Storylines & Promotions
• Indiana (12-15) visits the New York Liberty (11-17) Friday evening in a game featuring teams battling for final playoff spots in the Eastern Conference. It is the fourth of five meetings between the teams this season, with New York owning a 2-1 lead in the season series. The clubs have split a pair of meetings at Prudential Center already this season – the Liberty taking a 75-68 overtime decision on June 5 and Indiana earning a 74-53 win on July 13.
• Friday’s game begins an end-of-season stretch with each of the Fever’s last seven contests against teams from the East. With fourth-place Indiana engaged in a tight contest with Washington (14-15) and New York (11-17) to secure the East’s last two playoff spots, the playoff race is on.
• Friday’s game continues an eight-game stretch which features seven road contests. A West Coast trip and last Saturday’s game at Minnesota behind them, the Fever has road games at New York, Atlanta and Chicago before returning for the regular season’s final three-game homestand. A regular season finale is at Connecticut, Sept. 15, capping a season-ending stretch with 8 of 12 games away from home.
• A Fever win over the Liberty would be its second in three games, and would knot the season series with New York, 2-2, with one game remaining. Indiana can move within a half-game of third-place Washington in the East standings with a win on Friday.
• A loss would be Indiana’s fifth in six games, and would clinch the season series and tiebreaker for New York against the Fever. Even with a loss, Indiana would retain a half-game lead over the Liberty in fourth place.
• Briann January (124) needs three 3-pointers to pass Tan White (126) in the No. 4 spot on the Indiana chart for career 3-point field goals.
• Tamika Catchings needs four more steals to reach at least 70 thefts for the eighth time in 12 pro seasons.
• Tamika Catchings (1,991) needs nine field goals to reach 2,000 for her career, joining a select group of WNBA stars including Tina Thompson (2,602), Lisa Leslie (2,332), Lauren Jackson (2,090), Tangela Smith (2,059) and Katie Smith (2,034). DeLisha Milton-Jones currently ranks sixth with 2,007. Catchings is seventh. Taj McWilliams-Franklin has 1,985. Diana Taurasi is right behind with 1,971.
• At Prudential Center, where the Liberty plays its home games for one more season prior to returning to Madison Square Garden, the Fever is 2-4 in regular season meetings, counting a win and a loss already this season. The Fever lost a 2011 playoff date in Newark before knocking the Liberty from the Eastern Conference Semifinals. After three summers of renovation, the Liberty is scheduled to return to MSG in 2014.
Fever: F - Tamika Catchings, C - Erlana Larkins, G - Karima Christmas, G - Shavonte Zellous, G - Briann January
Liberty: F –Kamiko Williams, F - Plenette Pierson, C - Kara Braxton, G - Katie Smith, G - Cappie Pondexter
Fever center Erlana Larkins pulled down a career-high 16 rebounds and guard Briann January collected a season-high 21 points, but those statistics weren’t enough to compensate for 33 percent shooting as New York beat Indiana 77-72 at Bankers Life Fieldhouse. Forward Tamika Catchings battled her way to 16 points to become only the fifth player in league history to reach 6,000 for her career. Plenette Pierson (14 points, 11 rebounds) and Kelsey Bone (11 and 11) both turned in double-doubles for the Liberty. Cappie Pondexter had a game-high 24 points.
Fever vs. Lynx (Aug. 24): Maya Moore scored a career-high 35 points on 15-of-21 shooting to lead the Minnesota Lynx to an 84-74 win over the Indiana Fever. Moore hit three 3-pointers and added eight rebounds to pace Minnesota to its second straight win. Indiana never led, but tied the score four times in the second half. Tamika Catchings led Indiana with 22 points on 8-of-14 from the floor and three 3-pointers of her own. Layshia Clarendon started an 8-1 Fever run with a jumper followed by 3-pointers from Catchings and Jeanete Pohlen, tying the score before Minnesota’s final surge. Overall, Indiana shot 46 percent and used a season-high ten 3-pointers (10-of-20) to counter the Lynx’ shooting and 30-24 rebounding advantage.
Liberty vs. Lynx (Aug. 27): Maya Moore had 11 points and 10 rebounds to help the Minnesota Lynx beat the New York Liberty 73-47. Minnesota held New York to just 25 percent shooting (18 for 72) from the field. The Lynx scored the first seven points of the game and New York could never get closer than three the rest of the way. Cappie Pondexter scored 13 points to lead New York.
Indiana boasts a 30-20 series lead over the Liberty counting three games already this season. Including a 3-1 mark in 2012, the Fever has won three of the past five meetings, and 4 of 7. Indiana has won the season series with New York in every season since 2003, except for 2010 and 2011 when the clubs split 2-2 in both seasons. After losing 8 of 9 bouts from 2000-02 in the Fever’s infancy, Indiana is 29-12 since 2003.