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Thursday morning WNBA links: The Shock's rout of the Storm, the Western Conference playoff picture, and more rookie talk

10 links to begin your day, including a review of yesterday's games and some to preview today's games.


The scores may not always reflect it, but there's an argument to be made that a number of teams might be starting to find a rhythm or starting to refine whatever rhythm they had.

We take a quick sampling of links from around the league before the (super) early game today.

  • Jayda Evans of the Seattle Times reported that Seattle Storm guards Temeka Johnson and Tanisha Wright could only shake their heads when asked about the Tulsa Shock's 32-8 run during yesterday's 86-59 loss. Johnson commented that former teammate Riquna Williams, who had half of her game-high 26 points during that run, looks more poised in her second year. Read more >>>
  • Mechelle Voepel of ESPN writes about L.A. Sparks guard Kristi Toliver's ongoing development as a guard, specifically focusing on how offseason acquisition Lindsey Harding affects the way she plays the game. Toliver says the combo guard role in which she's able to go back and forth between playing the point guard and shooting guard role. In last night's 77-73 win over the Atlanta Dream she scored a team-high 15 points. Read more >>>
  • Melissa Rohlin of the Los Angeles Times looked at how Phoenix Mercury star Brittney Griner has not only learned to rise above the all of the criticism and bullying she has received over the years but also that she gets quite a few tweets from young people contacting her for advice about coming out. Griner is in L.A. to play the Sparks today at 7 p.m. PST. Read more >>>
  • Matt Leon of CBS Philadelphia had a feature up about Phoenix Mercury forward Candice Dupree who discussed her career and a shift in how she's changed as a scorer: "I’ve been able to stay out of the paint, shoot some jumpers a lot more now, especially now that we have Griner on the team.” Read more >>>
  • Aaron Lommers of the Everett Herald wondered who the top player in the 2013 WNBA rookie class is, focusing on Griner, Elena Delle Donne and Skylar Diggins. The consistent theme among the quotes from Seattle Storm players was that a) each has to be judged on their own merits in their given situations and b) it will be more of a learning process than the hype might have suggested. Both Delle Donne and Griner will be playing today with the former playing the New York Liberty in an early 11 a.m. contest. Read more >>>
  • Philip Hersh of the Chicago Tribune gave us an interesting thought to chew on in his preview of the Chicago Sky's game against the New York Liberty at 11 am EDT today: "...Swin Cash lately has turned the Sky's offensive Big Three...into a Fearsome Foursome, hitting a season-high 19 in the last game, an 83-70 victory visiting the Sun. It was Cash's third straight double-figures production after just two in the first 12 games." Read more >>>
  • Jake Sundstrom of Silver Star Stream takes a look at the question of who the top contender for the fourth spot in the Western Conference playoffs is and concludes that if Tulsa figures things out they could end up leapfrogging the San Antonio Silver Stars and Seattle Storm in the standings to nab the fourth spot. Read more >>>
  • Sundstrom also looked at the importance of Jayne Appel to the Silver Stars and, although it's difficult to measure defense with the data we have publicly available, his conclusion is the key point: "Anyone who has watched the Silver Stars this year at least feels like San Antonio is a black hole defensively without Appel on the floor." Read more >>>
  • Robert Seidman of TV by the Numbers summarized the ESPY Awards results and notes that Candace Parker won the award for best WNBA player. Read more >>>
  • Richard Deitsch of Sports Illustrated wrote a brief summary of the Nine for IX film "Let Them Wear Towels", concluding that it's not a great film but is an important one. Read more >>>

Obviously there are other links out there. Feel free to drop them in the comments, make them a fan shot, or write a fan post if you have longer thoughts you'd like to share with the community.