Who: Seattle Storm host the Tulsa Shock
What: While the Storm have wrapped up first place and home court advantage in the Western Conference, they continue to chase home court advantage throughout the playoffs. Meanwhile, the Shock look to continue the improvement they've seen over the course of the season.
Oh, and it's Lauren Jackson bobblehead night. Judging from the crowds outside, it should be a full house tonight, which is perfect considering the sun has gone away (temporarily right?) and given way to rain.
When: 7:00 p.m. PST
Where: KeyArena -- Seattle, WA || Local television: KONG 6/16 || Online: WNBA LiveAccess || Radio: 1150 AM KKNW
Storm Break WNBA Record For Margin Of Victory With A 111-65 Win (SBN Seattle)
SBN Seattle: Storm Two Games Away From Clinching WNBA's Best Record
Worth a read: Tulsa's Tuesday Win About More Than Basketball for Coach Richardson
Storm pre-game notes: Coach Brian Agler
- Watching the last game against Tulsa was tough because although the Shock's pressure forced them into some turnovers, they also didn't play as well as they would have liked to.
- He mentioned not only the number of turnovers they gave up, but also the number of free throw attempts. The connection? He suggested that when you turn the ball over often, you're often outnumbered going the other way and then foul while trying to recover. But looking at the film, a lot of their fouls came far away from the basket -- similar to the way Renee Montgomery fouled at the end of their last game...and we know those can result in losing games.
Shock pre-game notes: coach Nolan Richardson
- As described in freelantz's article (linked above), Tuesday's win had special significance for Richardson. He elaborated on that prior to the game, saying that he did not tell the team about it before the game. However, the basketball significance of such a win, as other coaches have noted, is that is was also special because it was just a win. And for a team that is still trying to figure things out, that's significant. They put four quarters together, they're coming together, and there has been a reciprocal learning process.
- He also discussed the development of a number of individual players, most notably Scholanda Robinson, Ivory Latta, and Chante Black. Robinson in particular has become the closest thing they have to a go-to player, Latta has done an excellent job running the team, and Black has been a workhorse on the boards this season to such an extent that he's glad to have Nicole Ohlde now -- who he also cited as an improved player -- as someone who can fill minutes at the center position.
- Overall, he's hopeful that if he just gets the players that can match other teams next season he can compete more effectively and win games.
- Best home court advantage in the league - KeyArena. Richardson cited Seattle's fans as knowledgeable and engaged fans that are part of what make it so tough to play in Seattle.