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Swish Appeal Fantasy: Nneka/Jewell duel allows Team Zack to finish second in league for Week 2

Team Zack has both Nneka Ogwumike of the Los Angeles Sparks and Jewell Loyd of the Seattle Storm, and those two were phenomenal against each other Saturday night.

Phoenix Mercury v Los Angeles Sparks
The Ogwumike sisters, Chiney (jersey #13) and Nneka (jersey #30), are doing well for Team Cat and Team Zack, respectively.
Photo by Adam Pantozzi/NBAE via Getty Images

The three teams that won in Week 1 of Swish Appeal’s fantasy league all won again in Week 2, creating three 2-0 teams and three 0-2 teams in the standings. While it’s clear that Team Cat is the dominant team in this league, having led in points both weeks, it’s worth noting that Team Zack took second place this week after coming in third behind Team Nemchock in Week 1. Here’s a breakdown of the three Week 2 matchups:

Team Zack (Zack Ward) over Team Leite (Chelsea Leite), 716.5-466.9

Team Zack, despite forgetting to draft a second center and third forward and settling for undrafted players Queen Egbo and Jessica Shepard, is doing pretty well. Shepard has been great and Egbo has been solid despite now playing behind Aliyah Boston; Egbo was of course a starter and member of the WNBA All-Rookie Team last year.

But it’s the big stars that have really gotten the job done for Zack. Brittney Griner was second among all players on the one day she played last week (Friday) with a score of 59.2. Then came Saturday’s Sparks/Storm game, which yielded excellent results for Zack. Nneka Ogwumike put the Sparks on her back and played smart and efficient basketball as usual. She was 8-of-14 from the field and 11-of-11 at the line for 27 points, adding 14 rebounds, four assists, a steal and a block.

Jewell Loyd did everything in her power to prevent Nneka from getting the win, and her early season results have played out like a best-case scenario for Zack. In Breanna Stewart’s absence, she is comfortably leading the league with 28.8 points per game, with a season-high 37 coming on Saturday (eight threes).

Chelsea’s big contributions came from Ezi Magbegor, Chelsea Gray and Aliyah Boston. Magbegor had 12 points, 14 rebounds, two assists, two steals and three blocks for 50.2 fantasy points on Tuesday. Gray had 17 points, eight rebounds, seven assists and two steals for 47.6 fantasy points on Sunday. Boston had 20 points, four rebounds, four assists and two blocks for 41.3 fantasy points on Tuesday.

However, Gray and Boston were both quiet in their other game last week, with Gray posting just 14.8 fantasy points on Friday and Boston managing just 15.2 on Sunday when her team faced Gray and lost a heartbreaker.

Team Cat (Cat Ariail) over Team Draves (Zachary Draves), 866.7-519.8

Cat had a lot of games last week, which helped her score (Zack actually had the higher points per game), but it wasn’t all luck, as Satou Sabally and Alyssa Thomas had monster weeks. Sabally averaged 59.3 fantasy points over three outings and Thomas averaged 51.7 (over three as well). Sabally had 39 rebounds and nine steals over the week; Thomas had 36 rebounds and 29 assists, including a Sun franchise-high 16 helpers in one game. Cat mentioned in our post-draft analysis that she was hoping for some triple-doubles from Thomas this year. While she has yet to get those five extra points from the Engine, she has certainly come close.

Napheesa Collier led Team Draves with an average of 36.1 fantasy points over three games. Zachary also got solid contributions from his Dream trio of Rhyne Howard, Cheyenne Parker and Allisha Gray, with Howard going for 30-plus fantasy points in both of her outings, Parker going for 40-plus and 20-plus and A. Gray going for 30-plus on one of the occasions. Elizabeth Williams continues to be a pleasant surprise; she gave Zachary 11 points, seven rebounds and four blocks in the Sky’s thrilling comeback win over the Liberty on Sunday. However, a sub-20 game apiece from A. Gray, Kelsey Mitchell and Marina Mabrey wasn’t helpful.

Team Nemchock (Eric Nemchock) over Team Josh (Josh Felton), 663.1-480.1

A’ja Wilson has picked up her scoring since scoring just 13 points in the first game of the season, having gone for 19-plus in each of the five contests since, highlighted by 27 on Sunday. That’s good news for Eric. Wilson also had seven blocks over her two games last week, compared to seven over the previous four. Courtney Vandersloot gave Eric two 30-plus performances and a monster 56.1 performance in New York’s loss to Chicago on Sunday. And how about Alanna Smith being a pleasant surprise with another big game this season on Friday? She had 18 points on 7-of-7 shooting from the field and 4-of-4 shooting from downtown.

Josh continues to rack up the Stewie points. Stewart posted 59.2 fantasy points at Seattle on Tuesday, 53.5 at Chicago on Friday and 48.7 in Brooklyn on Sunday. Jackie Young (37.6 fantasy point per game) and Natasha Howard (33.2) were also solid for Josh. However, he is suffering from Aerial Powers’ lack of playing time in Minnesota. Powers has only played 20-plus minutes once and 15-plus minutes twice in seven appearances this season. She dropped 20 points in the 20-plus-minute game, but dropped below four minutes of playing time in each of her two most recent games. She only gave Josh 15.7 fantasy points over three games last week.