After winning game 2 and securing home court advantage the Minnesota Lynx look to finish strong and bring home their second WNBA Championship. The only thing standing in their way is an Atlanta Dream squad that hopes to find some continuity as they fight for survival on their home court.
“We have 40 minutes, 80 more possessions to get to where we want to be and get to what we feel we deserve. But we know that Atlanta is going to bring everything. They’re going to throw the kitchen sink at us. We’re expecting them to come out and just try to do whatever they can to not be eliminated in Game 3.”
Minnesota Lynx guard Seimone Augustus
The main theme of the series has been intensity. The Lynx came out fired up in both contest and look to prove that they have what it takes to close out a Finals series against an opponent with nothing left to lose.
“If you watch us, a lot of what we do…the defensive stuff is pretty quick in terms of our work. We spend a lot of time on offense because offense takes talent, skill. Defense takes heart, determination. You just have to want to do it.”
Minnesota Lynx Head Coach Cheryl Reeve
The Lynx have shown that they not only have the talent for offense, but also the heart and determination to hassle opposing teams on defense. They are characteristics that the team has displayed all season, but that seem to be amplified during this current post-season run.
The Lynx finished game 2 with a 88-63 win, and some very impressive numbers. All five starters posted double-digits in the scoring column. In addition, they dominated the boards 40-22, won the assists battle 23-13, all while shooting a WNBA Finals record 57% from the floor and holding Atlanta to 36% shooting.
“I think we just had the mentality the whole season of just playing together, making plays for each other, and taking it one possession at a time…it’s never going to be a perfect game, it’s never going to happen. So it’s a Finals game and you know it’s going to be tough, and you just have to be able to move on to the next play.”
Minnesota Lynx guard Lindsay Whalen
Atlanta is going to have to get tough, and keep their heads up if they want to keep their Championship hopes alive. Angel McCoughtry, though very talented, has let her emotions get the best of her and has been forcing the issue resulting in poor shot selection and a lack of ball rotation from the Dream.
For the second consecutive game Erika DeSouza and Aneika Henry were the only Atlanta players to shoot above 50% from the field. The Dream looked irritated and uninspired during the second half of game 2 after finding themselves down 15 at halftime, they simply need to play a smarter brand of basketball if they plan to extend the series.
“We’re not giving up. It doesn’t matter how many we’re down. We’re going to go into it just like we always do. We’re going to play for each other and play hard and try to get a W. Nobody’s giving up in this locker room. We still have each other’s back and we still want a championship.”
Atlanta Dream guard Armintie Herrington
Game 2 marked the 18th time Lynx forward Rebekkah Brunson participated in a post-season contest making her the all-time leader in postseason games played, surpassing Taj McWilliams-Franklin’s number of 17 postseason games.
That experience and know-how has really shined throughout this season. Brunson comes into each game with the expectation that in order to win games you have to do the work early in each play, establish a strong court presence, and know what your opposition is trying to accomplish.
Game 2 marked another very high attendance total as 12,313 WNBA fans left it all on the floor of the Target Center for what may just be the last Lynx home game of the 2013 season.
“I think it’s amazing. Not just in the Playoffs, not just in the Finals, throughout the regular season we have an amazing fanbase. They continue to come out, and continue to support us. It makes you want to work that much harder. It lets you know that they’re in it with you, they’re in the trenches with you no matter what happens. We love it, we love being able to come home, play in front of them, and just give them a good show.”
Minnesota Lynx forward Rebekkah Brunson