Just the Facts, Ma'am: The Atlanta Dream started off strong, but the Connecticut Sun surged back from a twelve-point deficit and fended Atlanta off all the way to earn a 96-87 win. Connecticut had five players in double figures, led by Renee Montgomery's 21 points and eight assists, and Asjha Jones's 18 points and 10 boards. Angel McCoughtry led all scorers with 22 points and added nine rebounds.
For ridiculous checking, style points, clashes of not titans, histrionics, high-strung people everywhere, and a much better game than these noodle implements would suggest, join your intrepid and unusually punctual blogger after the jump.
Good afternoon, everyone, and coming to you quasi-live from Geno's Fast Break, it's the Game Notes of Doom!
We just ran into the Atlanta Dream coming from the hotel. Looked up from cashing out what was left of our stake, and there were a whole bunch of tall people in powder blue coming towards us. Not the first time I've seen it- it was much more unexpected at MSG all those years ago- but I find that to be one of Atlanta's more interesting quirks.
I do love Mohegan Sun's wi-fi. This is a good idea, Prudential Center, and you should follow it. I shouldn't have to ask for the press password.
I'm trying an experiment today- not wearing any Lib gear. I want to see if I'm treated less antagonistically if I'm neutral. So I'm currently wearing an extremely nerdy t-shirt from the Museum of Science and Industry, and if people treat me like crap I will assume that they're Trekkies.
Well, there was some slight antagonism from the bag check guy (no, sir, I do not think I am going to check my clipboard, given that half the reason I brought it was so that I could put small things into it), but I was also less willing to fight their stupid rule about no laptops unless you're media. So I'll call it a wash.
Great anthem, though I think the singer could have used a little less Loreena McKennitt in her library.
I think the women in front of us didn't like our commentary. They moved after halftime. Hey, ladies, we were cheering for your team. Of course, we were doing so because it was in the best interest of our team, but does that really matter? We were calling out McCoughtry's shenanigans and the refs' inability to count how long deSouza spent in the lane.
I'm starting to wonder about Coco Miller. She seems to enjoy hitting and being hit. Which, hey, whatever floats one's boat. That's really all I remember her for. Alison Bales brought a pretty little jump shot and her 6-7 frame along for the ride. Courtney Paris... um, she's really nice, and doesn't bat an eyelash at strange behavior, but she's as slow as molasses, and the only use she has is to fill space. Iziane Castro Marques is either hurt or has greatly angered the Meadors, because she only played at the end of the game, odd for someone who was starting early on. Sandora Irvin... is Sandora Irvin. Her only contribution to the box was a foul.
Angel, shut up. Sorry, reflex. McCoughtry spent most of the game diving, simulating, whining, taking shots, taking cheap shots, and arguing with anyone within audio range- including Marynell Meadors at one point... while Atlanta was on offense. She took the entire play off to have it out with her coach. Something tells me this relationship isn't much longer for the world. Érika deSouza spent a lot of time in the lane- no, seriously, a lot of time, and she was overpowering on the offensive boards. I love her awareness of her teammates' inability to hit jump shots and free throws. I'm a fan of Sancho Lyttle finding her offense, but inside the paint, not beyond the arc. She's aware that those shots were pretty much luck, right? That she's at her best when she's out-pacing slower forwards and cutting to the hoop? Or hitting the midrange J? Not the long-range one? Lindsey Harding didn't seem to be as much of a factor in this game as the box score suggests- well, in the first half, she was, but they seemed to have gone away from having her run the show in the second half. Of course, by then, they had given up the pretense of an organized anything. I love what Armintie Price brings to the floor: springs-in-her-heels, jump through the roof athleticism, a willingness to try and make big places, acrobatic ability that's like something out of an NBA highlight reel, tough defense. I hate what Armintie Price brings to the floor: the inability to hit a simple lay-up, the gambling on defense that leaves a man open.
Marynell. I say this as a fan of the game, a fan of the old school, and a dressmaker's daughter. Whoever is telling you that those jackets look good on you is lying to you. The cut makes you look like a chicken. Please have Carol Ross take you shopping unless she's the one telling you about the jackets.
Jessica Breland sighting! She totally should have gotten free throws! People need to make it less of a deal that Kara Lawson's not starting, because she's playing the minutes when they count, except when she's getting punched in the stomach. She hit the big shots and kept a steady hand on the offense when they needed to slow things up. Jessica Moore gave solid minutes, giving Jones and Charles rest when the biiiiig posts came in for Atlanta. She had her share of stupid mistakes, but that's why she's on her fourth team. (Well, that, and one of them sort of doesn't exist anymore. Damn you, Robert Johnson! Damn you to hell! You blew it all up!) Tan White's shot is back! And so is her sense of timing! I was very surprised there wasn't at least one "Tan White!" thread over on Rebkell's, for some of her acrobatic plays. Allison Hightower, no matter how good she is defensively, is a wee bit out of her league when it comes to guarding Angel McCoughtry one on one. Just saying. Kelsey Griffin has fallen off the face of the earth. Shouldn't she have hit the rookie wall last year?
Renee Montgomery looked like a woman who wanted to prove herself to her coach. She hit the big shots, she played the defense, she found the open players. Kalana Greene had a bit more luck guarding McCoughtry than Hightower did, but I suppose she has more experience at it. She really needs to pick up a bit of shot selection, though. Asjha Jones more than made up for her 9-24 game against New York. Lyttle and deSouza were more worried about Charles, and she found her spots. Tina Charles did her work, and a lot of her damage, on the offensive glass. It's nice to see a young player with that kind of nose for the offensive glass. That's something that usually needs more time to develop. She's going to be unbelievable when she really hits her prime. I have nothing to say about Danielle McCray, because she did nothing worth talking about.
Mike Thibault spent a lot of time hot under the collar. At one point, after Lawson got hit and was clutching her stomach with no call, we think he might have directly called out Meadors.
The officials let things get out of hand in the second quarter, but they were able to more or less get it all back under control in the third before things got chippy again in the fourth. For some reason, I get the idea that these two teams don't like each other. McCoughtry was flirting with a technical- Lamont Simpson warned her a couple of times, it looked like. There was a lot of dramatic begging for calls from refs from both sides. Build a bridge and get over it, kids, the officials in this league are kind of legendary. At least Penny Davis's only problem is that she blows late whistles, but she makes the right call.
The game for the autograph section was a large round of musical chairs. I think they might want to invest in sturdier chairs- the person who won did so by stealing the chair out from under the other player! Fun concept, though.
Your noms tip of the day: do not order pizza with a topping at Geno's, because they charge full pie price for two slices. The pepperoni ain't that good. Stick to the Kara Wolters or the two slices plain.
Shoutout to the six bucks I went up on Little Green Men before playing it back down to a buck-fifty in profit. Also, in case we don't have the opportunity to go up for playoff games, shoutout to Golden Global, the official Connecticut travel provider of the Game Notes of Doom- prompt service, fair treatment, reasonable prices, and dinner! What's not to like?
I sort of hope this is the last time Connecticut wins while I'm there, because, well, the next time I come up isn't going to be on a Chinatown bus, and it's going to be via Foxwoods.