Kent Youngblood writes about the Minnesota Lynx.

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Whalen gets new contract with Lynx

Posted by: Kent Youngblood Updated: September 6, 2013 - 11:04 AM

Lindsay Whalen agreed to a multi-year contract extension with the Lynx today.

Terms of the deal for the WNBA All-Star point guard were not disclosed, but her current contract expires at the end of this season.

Whalen helped the Lynx to the 2011 league championship and played on the 2012 U.S. Olympic gold medal-winning team.

The 31-year-old former Gophers star is averaging 14.7 points and six assists per game for the Lynx, who have the WNBA’s best record at 23-7. This is her 10th WNBA season, and fourth with the Lynx after six years with the Connecticut Sun.

Whalen plays in Europe during the offseason, although she left her professional team in Turkey early this year because of a contract dispute.


 

Laimbeer fined for saying Moore "should get hurt"

Posted by: Kent Youngblood Updated: August 22, 2013 - 11:17 AM

The WNBA fined New York Liberty coach and GM Bill Laimbeer for his quip about Lynx star Maya Moore.

The amount of the fine was not disclosed. It's unlikely Laimbeer, the former Pistons' "Bad Boy," will have to dig too deeply in his wallet. He played 14 years in the NBA and has been a successful businessman and coach since his career ended.

Moore played long after the outcome was decided when the Lynx beat the Liberty 88-57 at Target Center on Sunday. After the game, Laimbeer said: “I was a little disappointed they left Maya Moore in the game just to try to get player of the week again, when the game was out of control. She should get hurt for that.”

Moore, last week's WNBA player of the week, finished with 28 points and played until less than four minutes remained in the game.

The teams meet again, in New York, on Tuesday.

Lynx coach Cheryl Reeve was an assistant coach for Laimbeer -- who is also a former Timberwolves assistant -- when the Detroit Shock won two WNBA titles, along with another former "Bad Boy," Rick Mahorn.

The Lynx clinched a playoff spot last night when San Antonio lost to Indiana.

The Lynx (18-7) are at Connecticut tonight.

Laimbeer courts controversy

Posted by: Kent Youngblood Updated: August 19, 2013 - 5:15 PM

 Bill Laimbeer has never been one to pull his punches. Laimbeer, head coach for the WNBA’s New York Liberty, is a man who speaks his mind.

Which brings us to his post-game comments Sunday after his team has been beaten by the Lynx by 31 points at Target Center.

Laimbeer, whose team was shorthanded, was not surprised by the loss. He was not surprised by his team’s difficulty at scoring at times. But he was surprised – and, apparently, a bit upset – that Lynx coach Cheryl Reeve left star Maya Moore on the court so long.

“I was a little disappointed they left Maya Moore in the game just to try to get player of the week again, when the game was out of control,” Laimbeer said. “She should get hurt for that.”

This is a very interesting comment, on a couple levels.

First, Laimbeer and Reeve go way back. Reeve was Laimbeer’s assistant when the Detroit Shock was going to three straight WNBA finals and winning two a few years back. This was the first time the two met as head coaches of opposing teams.

Second, the Lynx have a rematch with the Liberty, in New York, Aug. 27.

Moore was last week's Western Conference Player of the Week. Sunday she finished with a season-high 28 points, hitting 11 of 17 shots – six of 10 from three-point range – while playing 36 minutes and 18 seconds, nearly six minutes more than any teammate. Moore scored eight fourth-quarter points before being taken out of the game with 3:42 left, moments after hitting her final three-pointer of the night.

It will be interesting to see how the second chapter of this emerging rivalry goes later this month.

 

Lynx aim to end losing streak

Posted by: Kent Youngblood Updated: August 18, 2013 - 5:45 PM

Lynx coach Cheryl Reeve said she hasn’t been disappointed in her team’s composure very often in the last two and a half years, but Friday, when the Lynx lost their third straight game, Reeve said her team lost control in the third quarter.

It’s something the Lynx can’t do if they want to put a stop to their losing streak tonight against the New York Liberty at Target Center.

Kelly Parsons here at Target Center, subbing for Kent again tonight.

The Lynx have struggled defensively lately, allowing at least 80 points in three of their last four games. Friday they played without all-star and team-leading rebounder, Rebekkah Brunson, who sat out with an injury.

Reeve said before practice there still wasn’t an official word on whether Brunson would be in the lineup tonight. But there was no doubt in Reeve’s mind her team missed the 31-year-old veteran.

“We miss her leadership, we miss her rebounding, her passion, “ Reeve said. “Brunson’s been in the league a long time, it’s that veteran stuff that you miss.”

Reeve said the Lynx were impatient on offense in the loss to Tulsa, taking ill-advised shots to try and dig their way out of a hole they created for themselves early. Tonight, she said, starting strong early will be key.

Reeve isn’t fully certain the Lynx, who still have the best record in the WNBA, have gotten the mistakes out of their system. But she’s hoping to see a different team tonight than the one she’s seen the past few outings.

“I won’t be confident until I see it different,” she said. “Today is going to show us a lot.”

 

McCarville back, Brunson out for Lynx

Posted by: Kent Youngblood Updated: August 16, 2013 - 6:21 PM

Lynx coach Cheryl Reeve didn’t have too many complaints about her team’s performance against Eastern Conference leader Chicago in Sunday's loss, the Lynx's second in a row. For that reason, she didn’t have a laundry list of things she needed her team to fix before tonight’s game against the Tulsa Shock at Target Center.

“I guess that’s what I’m hoping for, just a little more attention to detail,” Reeve said Friday, “a greater understanding that it’s a fine line between winning and losing.”

Kelly Parsons here, subbing in for Kent at Target Center.

The Lynx (17-5) will see the return of Janel McCarville (concussion) to the lineup. She sat out of the game against Chicago after sustaining a concussion, but Reeve said she expects the center to play her normal minutes against the Tulsa Shock. Rebekkah Brunson, however, will be held out tonight because of a knee injury.

The Shock (7-17) are last in the West Conference, 11 games behind the Lynx. Reeve said her team’s opponent is “desperate” to make the playoffs, therefore she expects the Shock to come out swinging. Still, as it looks to rebound from a two-game skid, Reeve is confident her team will be aggressive as well.

“If we’re desperate and bring our 'A' game, they’re desperate and they bring their 'A' game, our 'A' game should win out,” she said.
 

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