Tonight, probably off of most people’s radar, was Game 3 of the 2014 WNBA Finals between the Phoenix Mercury and Chicago Sky.
Games 1 & 2 in Phoenix were Mercury blowouts winning 83-62 and 97-68 (respectively). Both games were completely under control by Phoenix from the opening seconds with the team hitting 58% in Game 1 and 56% in Game 2 not to mention that between both games Chicago led for a total of 18 seconds. Unfortunately Mercury center Brittney Griner was beaten up in a very physical Game 2 taking a shot to the eye that required surgery and a broken tooth which left her sitting on the bench for Game 3 in Chicago.
Tonight’s game was much closer with the teams going back and forth through the entire game. With 30 seconds left in the game the score was tied at 82-82 so it literally went down to the buzzer to determine the winner. In the end it came down to Diana Tuarasi who nailed a jumper (and follow up free throw) with 14 seconds and grabbed the rebound with 9 seconds left. The game closed out with the final score of 87-82 and Phoenix winning the series 3-0 games. Tuarasi won the WNBA Finals MVP trophy to go with the Championship Trophy.
This is Phoenix’s third title in 7 years, the other two in 2007 and 2009. Considering that Phoenix went a record setting 29-5 this season and is made up of a solid core of seasoned players (Taurasi and Dupree) and young players (Griner and Bonner) it is quite possible that they may add a couple more trophies to their case over the next 6-8 years.
It is nice to see that a Phoenix basketball team can shut down a Chicago basketball team (sly dig on the 1992-93 Phoenix Suns).