Wow! What a game!
Atlanta Dream guard Shoni Schimmel was voted as a starter to the 2014 WNBA All-Star Game by the fans, and some wondered whether she deserved to be there. Well, I think she made a lot of people, including me eat some crow.
It's one thing for any player to score points, even bunches of them in an All-Star Game. But Schimmel turned on the jets in the fourth quarter and once again in overtime, where she scored 15 of her 29 points to lead the East to a 125-124 win over the West. The 29 points are the most all-time for any player in WNBA All-Star Game history. In addition, Schimmel also dished 8 assists.
In most All-Star Games, the score is relatively close until the fourth quarter when both teams clamp down on defense. In the fourth quarter, Schimmel scored 7 points in a critical 14-0 run the East made from 5:16 until 3:00 left in the period. At this point, it looked like the East was going to be victorious, but Skylar Diggins and Maya Moore led the West on a furious comeback, which included a Diggins layup to tie the game 112-all in regulation.
In overtime, the West led for nearly the entire period and were leading 124-117 with 1:59 left. The West would never score again. But Schimmel made the second of two three point shots with 41 seconds let in the game to make the score 124-123. Then, after Nneka Ogwumike missed a layup with 11 seconds left for the West, Tamika Catchings scored the winning layup for the East with 6 seconds remaining.
Definitely a great game for the fans who were watching at the arena, and for those watching on ESPN. Hopefully, we'll see more games like this for years to come.
- Brittney Griner attempted two dunks in the game. She missed her first attempt with 4:53 left in the second quarter, but made her second with 2:15 left in the same period, which came off a pass from Candace Parker.
- Sue Bird's selection to the All-Star game was something that we disagreed with when it happened. One thing that we cited was her individual defensive rating. If the West won this game, Bird could be the Defensive Player of the Game because she made two key defensive plays. First, at the end of the third quarter, she blocked a Briann January half court shot. Then Bird saved a loose ball, and tipped it off to an open Skylar Diggins who took it to the house for a game tying layup with 26 seconds left in regulation.
- While Schimmel scored more points than anyone else in WNBA All-Star Game history, it should be noted that Skylar Diggins scored 27, and Maya Moore scored 24 more points, which tops the previous All-Star Game scoring record of 23 points in a game.
- The WNBA All-Star teams wore their team uniforms from their respective teams. The Eastern Conference team's players wore their home whites, while the Western Conference team's players wore their team colored road jerseys. This is the first time that the All-Star teams have worn their team uniforms in the game since 2005.