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Preview: Can the Mystics bounce back?

The Washington Mystics got off to a great start to the season, beating the hyped-up New York Liberty 80-64 in D.C. Even before they were getting some second-place votes in the Media Power Rankings, and this win seems legit to those vote. People started to think, as they probably did again Thursday night when the Sparks jumped out to an early lead over the Aces, that maybe the WNBA is already over the top of a two-team race.

People are probably starting to consider Sparks a contender; All I’m saying is that he made the aces weak. But after defeating New York, Mystics fans probably had a lot of hope about their team’s title chances, as the Mystics very well could have He Team. They have Elena Delle Donne, who ranked third on our Top 30 Players list, and Ariel Atkins, who ranked 18th. Plus, they have a bunch of underrated players like Natasha Cloud, Brittany Sykes, Shakira Austin, and Myesha Hines-Allen.

It’s still early though. The Mystics came back down to earth in their next two games, losing both to the Connecticut Sun. They couldn’t slow down Alyssa Thomas and lost to fellow Elite Team.

The question now is whether the Mystics can bounce back and start getting some wins under first-year head coach Eric Thibault. Thibault started by outpacing the Liberty, but certainly isn’t satisfied with the current 1-2 record.

On Friday night, Washington takes on the Chicago Sky 2-0. Chicago is a team the Mystics know they should beat based on pre-season predictions, but it is also a team that has been impressive to start the season, so defeating the Sky will be beneficial and the Mystics can carry that feeling. Needed.

Kahleh Copper is the main Sky player that needs to be contained. He is averaging 17.5 points through two games and is 4-5 from three. Elizabeth Williams (12 points per game) and Alana Smith (10.5 points per game) are the second and third leading scorers for the Sky. The Mystics will also have Courtney Williams and Marina Mabrey on hand; Williams and Smith getting hot also complicates things.

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Dallas Wings at Seattle Storm

The Wings got almost all of their scoring from three players in their season-opening win: Arike Ogunbowale (27 points), Sato Sabali (25) and Natasha Howard (20). They can’t expect all three of them to give them that level of production every night, so it will be important for others to step up against the Storm. However, it’s still worth celebrating how well all three of them played – especially Sabli, who some were questioning as overrated.

Seattle apparently lost 41 to the Aces in their opener. Everyone needs to be better for the Storm if they want to beat a very good Dallas team, even Jewell Loyd, who had 22 points against Vegas. Twenty-two points could be no less for Loyd in a few games this year; He needs to have some monster outings.

game info

Washington Mystics (1-2) vs Chicago Sky (2-0)

When: 8 p.m. ET

Where: Wintrust Arena in Chicago, IL

how to see: Ion

Mystic Injury Report: Maisha Hines-Allen (outside; kneecap)

sky injury report: Sika Cone (out; illness), Isabelle Harrison (out; knee), Ruthie Hebard (out; personal)

Dallas Wings (1-0) vs. Seattle Storm (0-1)

When: 10 p.m. ET

Where: Climate Pledge Arena in Seattle, WA

how to see: Ion

Report of wing injury: Tierra McCowan (game-time decision; knee), Diamond DeShields (out; knee), Lou Lopez Senechal (out; knee)

Tornado injury reports: Gabe Williams (out; concussion)

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