Newark, NJ - The Washington Mystics, currently 3-12 are visiting the New York Liberty , at 9-7, for a Thursday evening contest at the Prudential Center. A few notes before the tip...
The tempo-free stats tell us the Mystics are struggling. The won-lost ledger confirms it. Washington averages 79 possessions per game with an offensive efficiency of 93. Not that good. Worse, the defensive efficiency is 102, yielding a -9 efficiency margin, a tell tale sign of a losing record.
The Mystics force opposing offenses into a 20% turnover rate. That is commendable but not of great consequence when your own offense checks in with a 21% TO rate.
An added interest tonight is a homecoming for Mystic guard Matee Ajavon. She starred at nearby prep power Shabazz High School before enjoying a fine career at Rutgers. First covered Ajavon in the New Jersey Girls TOC championship her Shabazz team won at the Izod Center about a decade ago. First time I saw her as a freshman, she entered a game against Tennessee seven minutes into the contest. She took an inbounds pass went end to end in the teeth of the Vol defense and scored. The RAC crowd erupted. Rutgers went on to send the Lady Vols home with a double digit loss.
Her Mystic team struggles yet the 5-8 Ajavon is second on the team in scoring averaging 14.8 points per game. Watching her will be a treat. And bring back recent memories.