Friday, September 17, 2021

Sparks hope for better start vs Seattle Spurs late playoff push

It’s not over, but it’s getting closer. With three regular-season games remaining, the Sparks are clashing with three other teams for the seventh and eighth seeds that will finalize the WNBA’s playoff bracket.

Big picture, Sparks is working on herself.

Playoffs or not, 2021 has been a learning experience for Derek Fischer’s revamped roster, for whom injuries to key players created growth opportunities under the bench – something sparks hope for him to mount more traditionally competitive campaigns in the future. will help to do so.

If the Sparks miss the season, it would be just the fifth time in the franchise’s 25-year history, including the league’s first two seasons and team existence, when only four of the eight teams qualified.

“We have a group that is figuring out how hard it is to be good in this league in professional sports,” Fischer said on Thursday after the Sparks dug a deep 17-0 hole that they didn’t climb out against first. Could—place Connecticut, lose 75–57 for LA’s sixth consecutive defeat.

“It doesn’t happen by accident, you can’t stumble into it, you can’t expect it, you have to work hard every day for it.”

Fischer said it looked like his team was feeling the pressure on Thursday, when their playoff prospects seemed to balance quickly as they faced the first-place Suns. The coach and general manager said that the tension of the situation, as much as anything, seemed to move his team over the starting line.

“There was something mentally stressful about this game tonight,” Fischer said on Thursday. “We were trying to figure this out, working really hard and sometimes when you try to push hard it just doesn’t work.”

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That pressure isn’t going to end all Sunday against the 20-10 Storm, which will be without 2018 WNBA MVP Breanna Stewart, who suffered a left foot injury last week and will miss Seattle’s final regular-season games. Otherwise, the storm will remain a formidable challenge; They recovered from a three-game losing spell with a pair of business victories against New York and Washington – both teams just before 10–19 sparks in the standings. (The Liberty and Mystics had an 11-18 record on Saturday morning.)

Sparks hope for better start vs Seattle Spurs late playoff push
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