Chicago Sky vs. Washington Mystics
While the Mystics have already locked up the top spot and a double bye through the WNBA Playoffs, they still have a big game to play today against the Chicago Sky.
Chicago still has a lot to play for in this game. With a win on Sunday and an Aces loss to the Mercury in Phoenix, the Sky could secure a first round bye and avoid the first round of single elimination games.
While that is plenty of motivation, if the Mystics aren’t resting anyone important, including Elena Delle Donne, they are going to be hard pressed to win this game as +8 underdogs.
However, the better play may be assuming that the early parts of the game will be high scoring.
These two teams have played each other three times this season and so far, the first quarters have been extremely high scoring, especially for the Mystics.
Washington has also been red hot in the first quarters of their games lately, so if they can bring that to one more home game here on Sunday, despite it not meaning much, I think there will be plenty of points scored in the first 10 minutes.
Chicago’s defense has been horrible lately and that has been even more true in the first halves. The Sky are allowing 118.2 points per 100 possessions over their last five first quarters, while scoring 117.4 during that stretch.
Considering the Mystics are averaging 128.5 point per 100 possessions at home in the first quarter, add the first quarter over to your WNBA Picks on Sunday afternoon.
My Pick: 1st Quarter OVER 45.5 (-120) @ 5Dimes
Seattle Storm vs. Dallas Wings
Speaking of teams with playoff implications on Sunday, the Storm could move into hosting a single elimination game next week if they can win and hope that the Lynx fall to the Sparks.
The Storm won the season series over the Lynx, so they own the tie breaker, but hosting a single elimination game could be the difference between moving on and going home.
While they are playing on the road, Dallas has been far from a good team this season. Their offense has been one of the worst in the league outside of the eventual Rookie of the Year, Arike Ogunbowale.
While I fully expect them to put up a good fight in their final game of the season, the Storm are underrated here, especially in the first half.
Dallas is allowing 103.3 points per 100 possessions in the first halves of their games this season and over their last five first halves, that defensive rating has jumped to 116.3.
Meanwhile, their offense has fallen off a cliff in those five games, averaging just 86.7 points per 100 possessions.
Teams have figured out that outside of Ogunbowale, the Wings have very little offense. By double-teaming the rookie every time she touches the ball and forcing it from her hands, Wings’ opponents have been able to stretch out sizable leads against them lately.
Granted, the Wings are a much better team at home, but the Storm aren’t bad on the road either. Between Natasha Howard, Jordin Canada, and Jewel Loyd, I suspect a three to five point lead for the Storm at the half of this one.
My Pick: Storm 1st Half -2 (-110) at 5Dimes
Jordan’s WNBA Picks 50-47-3