Los Angeles Sparks in First Following Topsy-Turvy Weeks

Two teams entered last week undefeated, but every team in the WNBA has at least one loss now.

The Los Angeles Sparks have the best record in the women’s association following the last week of results. LA and Minnesota had a showdown early in the week, one that featured two undefeated teams on Tuesday. The Sparks actually lost that game to fall behind Minnesota in the loss column. However, since Tuesday’s results the Lynx have actually lost two straight and by really big spreads.

On Friday, the Sparks and Lynx met again in a game that came from the Target Center in Minneapolis. Maya Moore, considered the best player on Minnesota, carried a thigh injury into the game. However, despite that injury she was still able to score 28 points in roughly 30 minutes of play.

The Lynx didn’t have much scoring punch after Moore on Friday while Los Angeles kept up its well-rounded offensive attack. Four players on Los Angeles scored in double digits, including Kristi Toliver who had 25 to lead her team to an 18-point victory. The Sparks would go on to win another game on Sunday against Connecticut, but Minnesota would lose again, this time by 24 points to the Washington Mystics. That means the Lynx went from undefeated at 13-0 to 13-2 in about 48 hours, all the results putting the Sparks up in first place.

In the Washington game, Maya Moore’s minutes seemed to be curbed drastically, something that should ignite some gossip or suspicions about the extent of her recent injury. She scored just five points in 15 minutes against Washington – clearly not as effective as normal. However, the game was out of hand early so perhaps Cheryl Reeve, the coach of the Lynx, recognized an opportunity to get her star player some rest.

Over in the Eastern Conference it’s the New York Liberty who have been making some noise lately. They have now won six straight to take over top spot from the Atlanta Dream, a team currently regressing following a hot start. However, it really looks like the stronger teams are out west at this point.

Los Angeles and Minnesota combine for a 26-3 record and we can’t forget about the Phoenix Mercury. They might just be 6-9, but they tallied a couple of wins in their last two games. Any team with Diana Taurasi remains dangerous as long as she remains healthy. Looking ahead, Phoenix have a game upcoming against New York (July 1st), one that might be a good one to watch to see if the Mercury’s bad form to start the season might have just been a blip.

Shane Lambert