Top two scoring teams Storm, Wings meet in Seattle
Considering how often their coaches preach defense, it seems strange that Saturday’s matchup between the Dallas Wings and host Seattle Storm is between the top two scoring teams in the WNBA.
The Wings (12-8), the hottest team in the league with five consecutive victories, are averaging 87.3 points per game, with the Storm (15-6), who lead the WNBA’s overall standings, just behind at 87.0.
“Defensively, I think we’re stepping it up a lot on both ends, the post and perimeter game,” Wings coach Fred Williams said of his team’s winning streak. “We’re shooting the ball much better than we did in the first 10 games of the season. It’s all coming together. We’re just thriving off of that and thriving off the team energy that we have.”
Added Wings guard Skylar Diggins-Smith, who is eighth in the league in scoring (19.5 points per game) and third in assists (6.5): “Anybody in this league can beat you any night, especially at home. It starts on defense. Being able to rebound, help, get really aggressive on the ball, getting tips. That’s when we’re playing our best and it definitely translates on offense.”
Both teams are coming off games against Los Angeles.
The Wings won 92-77 Thursday night on the road as Diggins-Smith scored 22 points and tied a season high with 11 assists, sparking a 21-2 run in the fourth quarter.
Dallas overcame center Liz Cambage being ejected in the second quarter after getting a second technical foul. Campage is sixth in the league in scoring (19.7 points per game) and second in rebounding (9.4).
The Storm had their five-game winning streak snapped in a 77-75 overtime loss to the Sparks on Tuesday at KeyArena.
Natasha Howard had 18 points and a season-high five blocks for Seattle, and Breanna Stewart, the league’s leading scorer at 22.0 points per game, had 14 points and 13 rebounds.
“You know, we were able to separate in the third, but then we were unable to finish plays (in the fourth),” Storm coach Dan Hughes said after his team was outscored 16-6 in the fourth quarter as the Sparks forced overtime. “It’s one of those days where I thought defensively we were OK, I think it was a matter of us taking care of the ball and finishing some of the opportunities we had.”
The Storm have had three days off since that game.
“We will get some treatment in, watch some video, get a good practice in,” Stewart said. “This season is short, so we don’t have time keep mulling over a game. Win or lose, you watch film, you move on.”