The Phoenix Mercury defeated the Chicago Sky in a decisive Game 3 to take a commanding 3-0 lead in the WNBA Finals.
The wnba championship history is a new record for the largest defeat in WNBA Finals history. Chicago Sky hand Phoenix Mercury an 88-52 loss on Thursday night.
1:12 a.m. ET
ESPN.com’s Mechelle Voepel
- Mechelle Voepel is an espnW reporter that covers the WNBA, women’s college basketball, and other college sports. Voepel has been with ESPN since 1996 and has covered women’s basketball since 1984.
CHICAGO (WLS) — At a sold-out Wintrust Arena, most of the electrifying excitement had evaporated by the fourth quarter of Game 3 of the WNBA Finals on Friday.
It wasn’t because the Chicago Sky, the team’s local team, were in trouble. On the contrary, they are currently only one win away from making club history by becoming the first WNBA champion. It’s just that the Sky crushed the Phoenix Mercury so comprehensively in an 86-50 victory that Chicago supporters were able to unwind for most of the second half.
Both teams gave their backups plenty of playing time, and it was just a question of running out the clock to reach to the final 36-point difference, the biggest in WNBA Finals history.
“I’m not concerned with how we won; I’m concerned with how we played,” Chicago coach James Wade said. “We understand the importance of being focused. I want them to be happy with tonight’s victory, but we need to focus on the next game after that. We need to get down to business.”
The Sky, who joined the league as an expansion club in 2006, will face the Mercury in Game 4 on ESPN at 3 p.m. ET on Sunday. They are up 2-1 in the best-of-five series, and a win would give Chicago the 10th WNBA club to win a title in the league’s 25th season.
Phoenix has three championships, but the fourth seems a long way off following the Mercury’s Friday performance. Their 25.8% field-goal percentage was the lowest in the WNBA Finals.
“We can’t be much worse than 50,” Phoenix player Diana Taurasi said of her team’s season-low point total, which is also the second-lowest in a WNBA Finals game. “We’ll be better than 50 percent of the time. That’s something you can take to Vegas with you.”
Candace Parker of Chicago has been in a similar position previously. When she was with the Sparks in 2016 and 2017, they faced a WNBA Finals Game 4 at home with a chance to capture a title. They were defeated on both counts. Regardless, they won the championship in 2016 in Game 5 on the road in Minnesota. However, they were defeated by the Lynx for the title in 2017.
Returning to Phoenix is the last thing on the Sky’s mind right now.
Parker, who returned to her hometown of Chicago as a free agent this season, said, “This is exactly where we want to be, to have a chance.” “They are, nevertheless, a fantastic team. The most important thing is not to get ahead of ourselves. It’s critical that we maintain the same mindset as we did before the game.”
On Friday, every Sky player scored, with Kahleah Copper leading the way with 22 points. Courtney Vandersloot finished with ten assists, passing Sue Bird of Seattle for the most WNBA playoff games with double-digit assists (10). This season, Vandersloot has a WNBA playoff record 87 assists.
After losing Game 2 in overtime in Phoenix on Wednesday, the Sky might have been rattled. Instead, they dominated from the start on Friday, matching the Finals record for biggest halftime advantage (22). These same two teams were engaged in the previous time a team had that large a lead at halftime in a WNBA Finals game — Game 1 of the 2014 Finals, when Phoenix held the enormous lead. The Mercury went on to win that game and sweep the series, claiming their third title.
Both Diana Taurasi and Brittney Griner were on that Mercury squad, and if they want to force a Game 5 this year, they’ll have to help repair the offensive that went awry on Friday. Griner was the only Phoenix player to reach double digits with 16 points on 7 of 17 shooting. Taurasi and Skylar Diggins-Smith teamed for a 3 of 19 field goal percentage.
“Today, nothing worked,” Taurasi said. “They truly pulled us out of everything we wanted to run, both inside and outdoors.” According to Diggins-Smith, “It was a shambles. Let’s play on Sunday and give them all the credit they deserve. Tonight, we didn’t lose the series. We have a chance to pull it out of the muck. It’s up to us to bring it. This is exactly what you’re looking for.”
The chicago sky vs phoenix mercury live stream is a game that took place on June 10, 2018. Chicago Sky defeated the Phoenix Mercury by 22 points in the game.
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