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Mercury Eliminated From the Playoffs, But Can Still Get To .500

Well, as could probably be expected, the Shock pounded the Mercury in the paint and eliminated them from the playoffs. That's sad -- I was rooting for them.

After playing a close game for three quarters, the Shock got 67% of the available offensive rebounds and took as many free throws as field goals in the 4th quarter. Once the Shock started focusing on their strengths, the Mercury just didn't have an answer.

But the fourth quarter isn't the whole story. Being the defensive team that they are, the Shock completely took away the balance that helped the Mercury get out of the Western Conference cellar. Kelly Miller had a negative pure point rating, which means she wasn't creating for others as well as she had in past games. The Shock forced the Mercury into their old one-on-one habits and forced them into taking bad shots.

The Mercury didn't play a bad game, the Shock just stepped up their defense in the second half when it counted. I was hoping the Mercury would turn it around, but you could just feel the game slipping away in the third quarter. The Shock just seemed to have complete control of the game.

It's hard to even say what the Mercury could have done to pull that one out...short of having Penny Taylor and Tangela Smith in the lineup. They were just over-matched and the better team won. Oh well.

There's still a shot at getting to .500 and for Taurasi to get the MVP. It will be an exciting end to the season.