When: Friday September 7 at 9 p.m. EST
How to watch: ESPNEWS (national TV), Monumental Sports Network (D.C. area)
Injuries: Elena Delle Donne (knee) won’t be 100 percent. Sue Bird (nose) is technically questionable if she gets a sudden nosebleed, but don’t bank on it.
What to look for
The Seattle Storm host the Mystics in the 2018 WNBA Finals. The Storm is one of the WNBA’s prestigious franchises. Their fans and longtime season ticket holders have seen them reach the mountaintop before, but the team is very young. Sue Bird is the only current player who was part of Seattle’s 2004 and 2010 WNBA championship teams. For other experienced players like Crystal Langhorne, she never played in the WNBA semifinals or Finals until this season. And for fifth year center Natasha Howard, though she is in her fourth WNBA Finals, she never was a regular starter until this season.
For the Mystics, the goal is to beat the Storm at least once at KeyArena in front of a raucous crowd at least once before Game 3. It won’t be easy because Seattle has a starting lineup that has more superstars and is a younger version of the Mystics in some ways. However, the Mystics’ current group of players is collectively more experienced and has more playoff success together than Seattle, Bird aside.
I’d be lying if I proudly proclaimed that the Mystics are favored to win the WNBA Finals. But I do think the stars are aligning this year for Washington to pull off something special. Here’s to a great Finals and a WNBA championship.