Aussies in WNBA: Taylor dominant, Lynx and Sparks chase record
|Jun 10, 2016|
Both the Minnesota Lynx and Los Angeles Sparks are chasing the best starts in WNBA history, both enjoying an impressive 8-0 start to the season. The Minnesota Lynx hold the record with 10 straight wins to start a season, and while no game is an easy one this year, we could be set to see some major records broken.
Candace Parker is the force that is leading the LA Sparks' to nearly their best start to a season in the franchise's history. Whilst the rest of the world is relieved that for some bizarre reason Parker was left out of the US Olympic team, perhaps it was that omission that is spurring her on. Parker is delivering 16.8 points, 6.9 rebounds, 4.1 assists, 1.8 steals and 1.2 blocks per game to date.
Parker continues to prove she is one of the most dominant forces in this league in all aspects of the game.
Like the Sparks, the Lynx have been an unstoppable force so far, and are leaving no stone untouched by giving every single game their absolute all.
"We consider regular-season games playoff games, as far as our mindset is concerned", said guard Seimone Augustus.
The Lynx's roster is completely loaded with talent, so it's no surprise they are sitting where they are. What helps is the inclusion of arguably the world's greatest current female player, Maya Moore, turning the heat up in every game for the Lynx.
Moore was instrumental in the Lynx's comeback win over the Phoenix Mercury, compiling 21 points, 6 rebounds, 4 assists and 3 steals. Moore has managed to pick up her second Western Conference Player of the Week so far this season, as New York Liberty's Tina Charles collected the Eastern Conference Player of the Week.
Charles has dominated all week as her New York Liberty picked up 2 wins from their 3 games. She began with 23 points and 11 rebounds in the Liberty's 10 point loss to the Lynx, backing up two days later with 14 points, 9 rebounds and 6 assists in a win over Indiana. Charles finished her week with a standard double-double of 19 points, 13 rebounds and 3 assists in their road win over the Seattle Storm.
Penny Taylor continues to lead the Australian talent, picking up 19 points, 4 rebounds, 5 assists and 2 steals in a dominant performance as the Mercury went down to the Seattle Storm. Taylor also managed to provide some highlights in the Mercury's physical effort - yet tough loss - to the Lynx.
Erin Phillips is holding her place well as the go-to play maker for the Dallas Wings. They currently sit 3rd on the Western Conference standings in a solid effort for the new franchise.
The Seattle Storm are in fourth place on the Western Conference standings, as Jenna O'Hea makes a big impact as she starts to find her footing in the team she has just joined from Europe. O'Hea impressed in adding 14 points in the Storm's win over Phoenix, a performance which included connecting on four 3-pointers.
In some sad news, and former Perth Lynx guard Betnijah Laney of the Chicago Sky has torn her ACL and will miss the remainder of the 2016 season. There is currently no time frame on her return.
Tributes flow in for Cash
One of the WNBA's most loved players, Swin Cash announced earlier this week she will retire from the WNBA at the end of this season. The New York Liberty forward will hang up the boots after her 15th season in the WNBA.
Cash's impact on the game is larger than life. After enduring serious injury and battling kidney cancer in 2007, she has managed to rack up 3 WNBA Championships, 2 Olympic Gold Medals, 4 WNBA All-Star selections and 2 WNBA All-Star MVP awards.
She was also the centre piece of the Detroit Shock's massive transformation. Cash arrived as the number 2 draft pick and that season her side finished last, to then turnaround and win the Championship the very next season.
In the words of Cash...
"I'll never tell you I was the best basketball player in the world, I'll never tell you I had the best jump shot or I was the best defender, but I will tell you that I competed and I won...And at the end of the day that's what people really remember. Were you a winner? Because if you can win, on a team sport, you can always translate that into business, you can always translate that into other thing you want to do because you have the competitive nature and that edge."