Series Preview: (1) Chicago Sky vs. (4) Indiana Fever

By: Ashley Atwell, WNBA.com


The 2012 WNBA Champion Indiana Fever battle top-seeded Chicago Sky in the Eastern Conference Semifinals.
Ron Hoskins/NBAE/Getty Images



Which team will win the Conference Semifinal matchup between Chicago and Indiana?
Which team will win the Conference Semifinal matchup between Chicago and Indiana?
View Results

Game 1: Indiana 85, Chicago 72
Game 2: Indiana 79, Chicago 57
Game 1: Indiana 85, Chicago 72 RECAP | VIDEO
Game 2: Indiana 79, Chicago 57 RECAP | VIDEO

The No. 1 seeded Chicago Sky take on the No. 4 seeded and defending champion Indiana Fever in the Eastern Conference Semifinals. Being the top seed in the East, Chicago looks like a clear favorite but what happened during the regular-season tells a different story.

In the four regular-season meetings between the two teams, Indiana took the series 3-1 with the Fever winning by as much as 20 points in one meeting. While Indiana easily took three games against the Sky, injuries were a factor for both teams this year, particularly for the Fever. Chicago hit a dip midway during the 2013 campaign rookie sensation and MVP candidate Elena Delle Donne suffered a concussion. Influential Sky point guard Courtney Vandersloot also sat out a game against the Fever.

For Indiana, perennial All-Star Tamika Catchings, who carried the squad to the 2012 WNBA Championship with an epic Finals MVP performance, averaged 17.7 points and 7.1 rebounds leading into this year's playoffs. But unfortunately, several starters, including Catchings, have battled injuries all season. Back in June, the Fever lost center Jessica Davenport to a stress fracture in her lower leg and another three players were out of the lineup through mid-July. Currently, the team doesn't have a true center listed on its roster so expect the team to play small in this series. While seasoned WNBA veteran Katie Douglas (15 points and 2.8 rebounds) is back on the court, Catchings sat out of the last game of the season with a sore back, but is expected to be back by Friday. Even with these setbacks, donít expect the Fever to go down without a fight.

While the Fever took the WNBA Championship this year, the path isnít so clear this year. The Chicago Sky, headed into its first playoffs and is led by one of the most dynamic young players to ever enter the WNBA in Delle Donne. Additionally, 2012 Olympic Gold Medalist Sylvia Fowles has had a monster year, adding impressive offensive numbers to her customary stellar defensive work in the paint. Look for this playoff series to be a competitive series, just based on the regular season series. Also, look for young talent to shine in the big spotlight.



2013 Regular Season: Indiana 3, Chicago 1

Saturday, June 22, Bankers Life Fieldhouse, Indianapolis, IN: Sky 71, Fever 61 | Box Score | Highlights
Chicago Leaders: Epiphany Prince (21 pts., 6 reb.), Elena Delle Donne (13 pts., 7 reb.)
Indiana Leaders: Shavonte Zellous (17 pts., 3 reb.), Karima Christmas (9 pts., 5 reb.)

Saturday, August 3, Bankers Life Fieldhouse, Indianapolis, IN: Fever 79, Sky 58 | Box Score | Highlights
Indiana Leaders: Tamika Catchings (17 pts., 10 reb.), Karima Christmas (12 pts., 5 reb.)
Chicago Leaders: Courtney Vandersloot (11 pts., 5 reb.), Sylvia Fowles (10 pts., 3 reb.)

Tuesday, August 6, Allstate Arena, Rosemont, IL: Fever 64, Sky 58 | Box Score | Highlights
Indiana Leaders: Tamika Catchings (18 pts., 8 reb.), Shavonte Zellous (14 pts., 4 reb.)
Chicago Leaders: Sylvia Fowles (14 pts., 17 reb.), Elena Delle Donne (12 pts., 2 reb.)

Friday, September 6, Allstate Arena, Rosemont, IL: Fever 82, Sky 77 | Box Score | Highlights
Indiana Leaders: Briann January (23 pts., 4 reb.), Shavonte Zellous (14 pts., 2 stl.)
Chicago Leaders: Sylvia Fowles (23 pts., 8 reb.), Epiphany Prince (19 pts., 2 ast.)



See how the teams match up position by position (regular-season stats)

Epiphanny Prince, G, Sky
15.0 PPG, 2.70 RPG, 3.0 APG
Shavonte Zellous, G, Fever
14.7 PPG, 3.4 RPG, 1.7 APG
Courtney Vandersloot, G, Sky
8.8 PPG, 3.20 RPG, 5.6 APG
Karima Christmas, G, Fever
8.6 PPG, 4.1 RPG, 1.1 APG
Elena Delle Donne, G/F, Sky
18.1 PPG, 5.60 RPG, 1.8 APG
Tamika Catchings, F, Fever
17.7 PPG, 7.1 RPG, 2.4 APG
Swin Cash, F, Sky
9.3 PPG, 5.60 RPG, 2.2 APG
Katie Douglas, G/F, Fever
15.0 PPG, 2.8 RPG, 1.5 APG
Sylvia Fowles, C, Sky
16.3 PPG, 11.50 RPG, .4 APG
Erlana Larkins, F, Fever
7.9 PPG, 7.8 RPG, 1.9 APG
More Ľ

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