The Atlanta Dream got off to a slow start against the Washington Mystics but made it a contest by the fourth quarter, and the Phoenix Mercury-Seattle Storm contest was intense from the opening tip to the final buzzer.
Washington Mystics (1) — Atlanta Dream (0)
Game 1 score: Washington Mystics (87) at Atlanta Dream (84)
Picking up where they left off after dismantling the LA Sparks in the second round, the Mystics got off to a blistering start against the Dream in Atlanta, scoring their way to a 15-point lead. Atlanta pulled the game even after the first quarter, 26-26, but lost ground in the second (16-25) and third (19-24) quarters. The Mystics kept the pace in the fourth, but a three-pointer from Tiffany Hayes, her first of the night, gave the Dream some momentum to pull the game to within three points. But a missed three by Jessica Breland with 10 seconds in the game let the Mystics hang on for the win. Elena Delle Donne was the game-high scorer with 32 points and 13 rebounds for a double-double, while Alex Bentley scored a team-high 19 points for Atlanta.
Phoenix Mercury (0) — Seattle Storm (1)
Game 1 score: Phoenix Mercury (87) at Seattle Storm (91)
Diana Taurasi opened the game with a three-pointer that set the tone for the first quarter, with players on both teams scoring from deep, including all Seattle scorers. Seattle pushed the lead to 12 points by the end of the third quarter, but Phoenix made a strong push in the fourth thanks to strong play from DeWanna Bonner and a timely three from Taurasi to make it a two-point game with under two minutes in regulation. Hustle plays late by Breanna Stewart and Jewell Loyd sealed the deal for Seattle, though, and Stewart finished with a game-high 28 points. DeWanna Bonner was Phoenix’s high scorer with 27 points and 13 rebounds for a double-double.