On Japanese Heritage Day, the Washington Mystics secure a 70-57 win over the Minnesota Lynx, who had a bit of traveling issues flying into the District. Elena Delle Donne led the charge with 21 points and 10 rebounds, while Ariel Atkins added 15 points, five rebounds and three steals in the victory.
It looked as if the Lynx were going to run away going into the second quarter of the game after leading 17-13 in the first, but Washington had other plans outscoring the Lynx 24-11. Delle Donne and Atkins were the only starters in double figures as Shatori Walker-Kimbrough represented for the reserves with 11 points, three rebounds, three assists and only missing one shot.
The defensive efforts of the Mystics helped get the win as they totaled 12 steals, led by Atkins with three. Alysha Clark, Shakira Austin, Natasha Cloud and Elizabeth Williams all added two a piece. Five blocked shots from Washington was a plus as well.
The Lynx leading scorer was Kayla McBride with 16 points and former Mystic Aerial Powers with 11 points. Minnesota did crash the boards better than the Mystics outrebounding them 45-38 led by Sylvia Fowles and Jessica Shepard with 12 rebounds each.
After the game via Twitter, General Manager and Head Coach Mike Thibault apologized for his pregame remarks about the flight delays with Minnesota. His initial comments were that he was tired of hearing about it and that it happens to every team and everyone goes through it.
My apologies to @LynxCoachReeve and @minnesotalynx for my reaction to the question asked of me at my pre-game press conference today. It’s not who I am and I should have just answered the question without the extra dramatics.— Mike Thibault (@coachthibault) July 17, 2022
Washington will get a slight break as their next game isn’t until Thursday July 21. Their opponent is the New York Liberty and the game is scheduled to begin at 11:30 a.m. ET as it will be Camp Day at Capital One Arena.