I mentioned in the comments of my WNBA Eastern Conference Finals preview today that this series between the Connecticut Sun and Indiana Fever figures to be something of a chess match.
With the two teams only playing at full strength twice during the regular season and Erlana Larkins and Erin Phillips starting the final two games of their first round series against the Atlanta Dream, it's clear that both coaches are going to have some decisions to make going in and will then have to adjust as the series goes on.
Bob Corwin of Full Court Press framed the chess match as follows in his series preview:
Larkins had 20 rebounds in the series-clinching Game 3, and Connecticut coach Mike Thibault now has to prepare for her instead of Tammy Sutton-Brown or Jessica Davenport.
Or does he? Will Dunn make new adjustments going into the Connecticut series? What worked so well against the Dream is less likely to work against the Sun so Dunn will have to decide whether to try to ride the Fever's current positive momentum or make changes yet again out of the gate. On the flip side, there's not much motivation for Thibault to roll the dice, given the relative ease of the sweep of New York Liberty, so expect the Connecticut Sun status quo in Game 1.
Corwin goes on to predict the Sun winning the series in three games because the numbers seem to be in their favor and it's hard to disagree with that assessment. But with Dunn's obvious willing to tinker even at this late stage in the season, it's hard to predict exactly what this series will look like.
For more on the series, check out our Eastern Conference Finals preview.