One of the goals for the Lynx today will be to get Maya Moore some good, easy looks early. The Lynx and Phoenix will tip off in about an hour, and for the Lynx to beat the Mercury they need Moore back in rhythm on offense.
Moore – who will receive her award for winning Western Conference player of the month for May before the game – had a blistering start to the season. But she has cooled off, at least on offense, in recent games.
In her last three games – two of which were Lynx losses – Moore has shot 13-for-43 and averaged 11.3 points.
Lynx coach Cheryl Reeve said Moore has been pressing a bit. Her advice to Moore today: Let the game come to you.
“Hopefully we can get her a couple of easy ones early” Reeve said.
It’s not like Moore hasn’t been through this before. And it should be noted that, even during her shooting slump, Moore has continued to do other things. She averaged 9.0 rebounds and a block in those three games. Even against Atlanta Friday, when Moore went 2-for-11 – Moore was a plus-12, tied for best on the team.
“When you’re scoring 30-plus points, everything you throw up it feels good and looks good and goes in,” Reeve said. “We just talked about letting the game come to her, make the easy plays. If it’s open, shoot it. If it’s not, make the next pass.”
Here are some other pre-game items:
--Monica Wright is expected to be in uniform for the first time today. And there is a chance Wright – who had knee surgery in late April – could make her debut. But, if it happens, it will be a brief one, Reeve said.
-For the first time this season, rookie guard Tricia Liston got extended minutes in Minnesota’s loss in Atlanta. And while she didn’t exactly light it up – she went 1-for-4, hit a three-pointer and both free throws and wound up with five points – Reeve said she liked the way Liston played. And that the first-round draft pick looks to get more playing time going forward.
“We got to the point where it wasn’t happening for (Lindsey) Moore or (Tan) White,” Reeve said of her decision to play Liston down the stretch Friday. Liston finished with a plus-10, third-best on the team. “Tricia, at practice, had some of her best practices last week and she deserved an opportunity. I loved her confidence. I put her in there. Talk about throwing someone into the fire. … She hit a big three off a bounce play. She didn’t hesitate. She did a solid job on defense, got some rebounds.’’