Three of the six teams playing Tuesday night are already in the playoffs, two are out and one needs a win to stay alive. Here’s how to watch:
Dallas Wings (14-17) at Connecticut Sun (18-13)
When: Tuesday, August 14 at 7 p.m. ET
Where: Mohegan Sun Arena | TICKETS
How to watch: Twitter (worldwide streaming), NBC Sports Boston (local market)
Injuries: Liz Cambage (neck) is questionable for the Wings.
Storylines to follow
Last meeting: Sun 101, Wings 92 (August 8)
The Wings have a new head coach heading into the final three games of the season, with Fred Williams being relieved of his duties following Sunday’s loss, the team’s eighth straight. Taj McWilliams-Franklin will serve as interim head coach for the rest of the season and try to get the struggling team back on track, at least enough to secure that eighth seed in the playoffs.
But it won’t be easy against a Sun team that has won six of its last seven games, nor would it against any team at this point for the Wings. Between the front office shakeup and Liz Cambage’s return still questionable following a head injury last week, the team seems out of gas at the worst possible time. And with the Aces (who don’t play again until Wednesday) now just a game back, a loss could spell big trouble in the final week of the season.
Meanwhile, Connecticut is in its own battle for the fourth seed in the playoffs, which comes with a first-round bye. With the way the Sun have been playing lately, Dallas should be very worried about their own prospects headed into this game.
Chicago Sky (11-20) at Minnesota Lynx (17-13)
When: Tuesday, August 14 at 8 p.m. ET
Where: Target Center | TICKETS
How to watch: NBA TV (national TV), FOX Sports GO (worldwide streaming), The U Too (Chicago-area TV)
Injuries: For the Lynx, Rebekkah Brunson (concussion) is questionable and Danielle Robinson (ankle) is recently out for the season.
Storylines to follow
Last meeting: Lynx 85, Sky 64 (August 7)
Chicago has a neat chance to play for pride here, having been eliminated from the playoffs a few days ago. With the season series tied 1-1, the Sky have a chance to pick up a solid, meaningful victory that would keep the Lynx in the seventh-seed position and perhaps force them to begin their title defense in the very first round of the playoffs.
With Danielle Robinson out for the season following ankle surgery and Rebekkah Brunson potentially sitting this one out, the Sky could take advantage once more as they have against other injury-stricken teams this season. Of course, Maya Moore will still pose a problem for them — she had 31 points in these teams’ last meeting — but with the way Courtney Vandersloot has been playing lately in spite of her team’s season-long struggles putting games away, this game could still be considered a toss-up, even though the outcome won’t mean much for the Sky either way.
New York Liberty (7-23) at Los Angeles Sparks (18-12)
When: Tuesday, August 14 at 10:30 p.m. ET
Where: Staples Center | TICKETS
How to watch: NBA TV (national TV), Spectrum SportsNet (Los Angeles-area TV), MSG+ (New York-area TV)
Injuries: For the Liberty, Shavonte Zellous (ankle) and Epiphanny Prince (knee) are doubtful, while Marissa Coleman (ankle) and Amanda Zahui B (hip) are questionable.
Storylines to follow
Last meeting: Sparks 82, Liberty 81 (August 8)
The Liberty are definitely starting to wrap things up for the season, as they find themselves eliminated from playoff contention with just a week to go and in the midst of a league-worst nine-game losing streak. While the previous meeting between these teams just six days ago was quite close, the combination of the Liberty’s multiple absences and that their last four games of the season will all take place on the road doesn’t bode well for the outcome of this one.
But that doesn’t mean that the Sparks aren’t vulnerable. Although they’re right in the mix for the chance at a first-round bye, they’ve lost two in a row, and the game before that was the one-point squeaker over this Liberty team in New York. That said, if the Sparks play the Liberty more or less exactly how they did in their last meeting, the home-court advantage should give them a friendly push over a team that has seen better days.