Sky-Lynx Preview

Perhaps the most impressive victory during Chicago’s season-high four game winning streak came a week ago at home against the Minnesota Lynx.

However, coach Pokey Chatman expects things to be more difficult when the surging Sky try to avoid a fifth consecutive defeat at Minnesota on Friday night.

Chicago (9-5) shot 50.8 percent from the field, went 21 of 23 from the free-throw line and became the first team this season to drop 90 points on Minnesota in last Friday’s 90-83 victory. League scoring leader Elena Delle Donne (24.7) and Cappie Pondexter each recorded 24 points as the Sky handed the Western Conference-leading Lynx (10-3) what’s been their lone defeat over the last six contests.

"We’re living the dream," Chatman told the Sky’s official website over that contest. "Playing basketball and getting paid for it."

Chatman’s usual carefree approach to the game continues to rub off on a Sky team that’s having fun while going 4-0 since ending June with two straight defeats. Chicago has averaged 90.3 points while shooting 50.7 percent in three games beginning with that win over Minnesota.

Delle Donne finished with 11 points on 4-of-11 shooting during Wednesday’s 85-57 rout of Washington, failing to score more than 12 for the third time in four games. Allie Quigley helped pick up Chicago’s star with a team-high 15 off the bench while Pondexter added 14 against the Mystics.

"(Delle Donne) doesn’t need to score for us to be successful," Chatman said. "I think there will be more attention paid to others. I think you try to cut the head of our snake off but there’s more to it."

Though Chatman is confident in Delle Donne’s teammates that together make up the top offensive team in the league, she understands it likely will take a complete effort to win at Minnesota. The Lynx are the WNBA’s top defensive team and have yielded an average of 54.0 points while winning three straight at home since falling 86-78 to Tulsa on June 21 for its lone setback in six contests there.

The Sky haven’t scored more than 69 points while dropping four straight at Minnesota by an average margin of 11 points.

"They are a great team," Chatman said. "They aren’t going to worry about us, but more about themselves."

Working her way back from a lingering bout with Lyme disease, Delle Donne had two points in 16 minutes off the bench in last season’s 74-64 loss at Minnesota on Aug. 7. Quigley finished with 20 points for the Sky.

Minnesota All-Star Maya Moore had a quiet 17 points in that meeting but scored a season-high 29 in last week’s visit to Chicago. Moore (18.8) has averaged 23.8 points in the last five contests after scoring 26 in Tuesday’s 85-79 win over Connecticut.

Fellow All-Star starter Seimone Augustus scored 21 in that contest.

Lynx guard Monica Wright will be out indefinitely after undergoing arthroscopic surgery on her right knee Thursday. Wright, who has been Minnesota’s top reserve for the majority of her six-year career with the team, missed the first five games because of a strained right calf muscle and averaged 2.1 points and 11.5 minutes over seven contests.