Top 5 Observations of 2014 Season... So Far
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1) Moore Setting Records
Maya Moore is no stranger to awards and praise. She was the WNBA Finals Most Valuable Player in 2013, 2011 Rookie of the Year, Gold Medalist for the U.S. in 2012 and two-time WNBA Champion with the Lynx in 2011 and 2013.
This season, Moore has continued her dominance. She set the WNBA record for most consecutive games scoring 30+ points, won the WNBA Western Conference Player of the Week and WNBA Western Conference Player of the Month for May. She’s averaging 27.6 points per game, a league-high, nearly nine boards and playing 36 minutes per game.
2) Cheryl Reeve Tops 100 Career Wins
With the team’s 87-79 victory at the San Antonio Stars on June 1, Reeve got her 100th win as a head coach in the WNBA. She is the winningest coach in Lynx franchise history, and her winning percentage is the best in WNBA history.
Reeve was hired as the head coach of the Lynx in 2009 and quickly restored a team that hadn’t made the playoffs since 2005. She has led Minnesota to three straight WNBA Finals appearances, winning championships in 2011 and 2013, and the team’s current 7-0 record. Reeve isn’t in it for the glory or acknolwedgement, but she has brought plenty of it to Minnesota.
3) Portugese in the Post
Lynx players have become extremely familiar with Google Translate this season as their rookie teammate Damiris Dantas comes from Brazil. The language barrier hasn’t fazed Dantas, though, as she’s made her way into the starting lineup with Rebekkah Brunson suffering from a knee injury.
She’s averaging seven points per game this season, but has started to emerge as a tough offensive post player over her last few games. Dnatas scored a career-high 17 points in a May 30 win over San Antonio, even though she missed most of the second quarter after taking an elbow to the face, and she’s averaging 7.6 rebounds per game.
Dantas’ post moves are only getting better, and they’re something teams will have to expect in the starting lineup at least until Rebekkah Brunson is healthy, if not for the rest of the season.
4) Overcoming Injuries
The Lynx are finally getting some relief from three injuries that plagued the team this spring. Forward Devereaux Peters has returned to the lineup after undergoing surgery on her left knee this spring. She has been practicing with the team and even played a few minutes in each of the Lynx’s last two games.
Monica Wright, a guard, also had surgery on her left knee and just returned to practice with the team this week. Though she is doubtful to play in the team’s two road games this weekend, coaches and trainers are optimistic that she will be available soon.
The biggest injury for the Lynx this year, though, was Rebekkah Brunson. Brunson had surgery on her right knee and is expected to be out for at least another month. She was one of the WNBA’s top rebounders and defenders and was a 2013 WNBA All-Star.
Despite these setbacks, the Lynx retain the best record in the WNBA. And with these players coming back from injures, the squad can only stand to get better. With twelve healthy players, the Lynx could be unstoppable.
5) Chasing the 2012 10-0 start
The Lynx set a WNBA record in 2012 with an undefeated 10-0 start to the season. The team is currently 7-0, a WNBA best, and, though no one on the team wants to comment on it, they’re hoping to break their own record.
The team has three road games coming up against Seattle, Los Angeles and Atlanta, and wins in those arenas would tie the record. Minnesota’s eleventh game comes at home against Phoenix Sunday, June 15. If the team can stay perfect, that wouldn’t be a game to miss.
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