Kent Youngblood writes about the Minnesota Lynx.

Final regular season game has meaning for Lynx

Posted by: Kent Youngblood Updated: September 14, 2013 - 6:16 PM

In a few hours we’ll know which team has the top seed in the upcoming WNBA playoffs.

The winner of tonight’s game between the Chicago Sky and the Lynx at Target Center will have that spot, which guarantees home-court advantage throughout the playoffs.

A Lynx loss would mean opening the finals in Chicago, should both teams get that far. Of course, the Lynx would still start the finals at home with a loss tonight should the Sky get knocked off in the Eastern Conference playoffs.

Should Chicago win, the two teams would finish with the same record, but the Sky would hold the tie-breaker given the season sweep; Chicago beat Minnesota in overtime in Chicago last month.

Lynx coach Cheryl Reeve has some mixed emotions about how to approach this game. “When a game doesn’t mean anything, it’s challenging for a coach. The players approach it differently, and things happen when you do that.’’

So she’s glad this game has meaning, right? Well: “But there is another side to me that goes, ‘I have a playoff game Friday. I want to make sure we go into that thing healthy.’ So that is in the back of my mind, that this game, in the end, while it is for home court throughout, doesn’t matter nearly as much as my (playoff games).’’

There are some other things to look for tonight:

--Watch the play of backup point guard Lindsey Moore, who appeared to turn a corner of sorts in Thursday’s loss in Los Angeles. Moore played 16:40 in the game, her second-highest total of the season. She was on the court when the Lynx made their run from late in the third quarter into the fourth in Los Angeles – she was a team-best plus-17 in the plus/minus ratings – and she had season highs in points (five), rebounds (three) and assists (three).

Reeve said Moore has been coming on strong in practice the past couple weeks. “Lindsey has been giving us those positive feelings over the last week and a half or two weeks,” she said.

This after a mid-season stretch in which Moore struggled. “It was a rough time for her,” Reeve said. “And then, I don’t know what happened for her. But she has some momentum now, she has done some good things.”

--Minnesota has won 79 games since the start of the 2011 season, becoming just the third team with three straight 25-plus-win seasons in the process. A victory tonight would match Houston (1998-2000) for most victories in a three-season stretch, one behind the 81 won by Los Angeles from 2000 through 2002.

--The Lynx enter tonight’s game within reach of league single season records for field goal percentage, assists per game and fewest turnovers per game. The team enters the game shooting 47.3 percent for the season, just 0.2 percent behind the 2013 Sparks. With 20.4 assists per game the Lynx are 0.4 assists per game behind their own record of 20.8 set last season. The Lynx currently average 12.1 turnovers per game, and if that stands up it would be a record.

I’ll get back to you after the game.


New England 2/1/15 5:30 PM
Minnesota 94 FINAL
Philadelphia 103
Houston 93 FINAL
Boston 87
Portland 99 FINAL
Atlanta 105
Sacramento 90 FINAL
Cleveland 101
Toronto 127 FINAL
Brooklyn 122
Dallas 93 FINAL
Miami 72
LA Clippers 103 FINAL
New Orleans 108
Golden State 100 FINAL
Utah 110
Chicago 93 FINAL
Phoenix 99
Pittsburgh 2 FINAL(OT)
New Jersey 1
St. Louis 3 FINAL(SO)
Carolina 2
Nashville 0 FINAL
Colorado 3
Buffalo 2 FINAL
Vancouver 5
Chicago 4 FINAL
Anaheim 1
Harvard 75 FINAL
Princeton 72
Quinnipiac 57 FINAL
Canisius 63
Brown 49 FINAL
Cornell 57
Siena 79 FINAL
Manhattan 87
Marist 65 FINAL
Niagara 61
Dartmouth 51 FINAL
Penn 58
Oregon 68 FINAL
Arizona State 67
Yale 63 FINAL
Columbia 59
Monmouth 60 FINAL
Fairfield 59
Western Ill 63
Oregon State 34 FINAL
Arizona 57
Kent State 55 FINAL
Buffalo 80
Canisius 75 FINAL
Monmouth 58
Butler 67 FINAL
Providence 59
Cornell 65 FINAL
Brown 52
Columbia 47 FINAL
Yale 55
Coll of Charleston 47 FINAL
Drexel 64
Penn 55 FINAL
Dartmouth 39
Elon 60 FINAL
James Madison 89
(19) Princeton 96 FINAL
Harvard 46
(9) Florida State 82 FINAL
Georgia Tech 62
Quinnipiac 87 FINAL
Siena 62
Richmond 54 FINAL
Rhode Island 50
Loyola-Chicago 58 FINAL
Southern Ill 64
Georgetown 52 FINAL
DePaul 93
Villanova 75 FINAL
Marquette 59
Wichita State 70 FINAL
Northern Iowa 51
Xavier 65 FINAL
Creighton 74
Bradley 58 FINAL
Illinois State 55
Missouri State 89 FINAL
Drake 94
Arizona 48 FINAL
Utah 62
(11) Arizona State 68 FINAL
Colorado 60


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