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Atlanta Dream guard Angel McCoughtry (35) tried to protect the ball against Lynx forward Maya Moore, left, and guard Seimone Augustus (33) during Game 1 of the WNBA Finals on Sunday.

Stacy Bengs, Associated Press

McCoughtry: Dream must stop being nice

  • Article by: Kent Youngblood
  • Star Tribune
  • October 7, 2013 - 10:14 PM

It is time for the Atlanta Dream to get tough, Angel McCoughtry said.

Much as she did after her team lost in its first playoff game a couple of weeks ago, McCoughtry — the team’s outspoken star — challenged the Dream to respond to Sunday’s one-sided loss to the Lynx. Game 2 of the best-of-five series is Tuesday at Target Center.

“The reason Indiana beat them last year was because they were physical,” said McCoughtry, who admitted she was embarrassed by her 6-for-24 shooting performance in Game 1. “We’re too nice. We can’t be nice. I know we have a great group of nice girls. But we have to be monsters and we have to be disruptive out there on the court. We can’t let people push us around.’’

Perhaps the poster play from Sunday night was when McCoughtry ran full-speed into a Janel McCarville pick, crumpling to the ground and staying there as the Lynx scored.

“I run into a brick wall and we stand there and let them score?” McCoughtry said. “I would knock somebody on their [rear end]. That’s the atmosphere you have to play with in the playoffs. It’s not being dirty, it’s just fighting and clawing and making a statement. I get beat up, demolished every game. Why aren’t we beating other teams up, too?”

Playing with lower back pain, McCarville said that pick, while memorable, might have hurt her more than McCoughtry. Informed of this, McCoughtry smiled. “I don’t know about that,” she said. “She was still standing and I was on the floor a little dizzy.’’

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