At a glance: WNBA Western Conference final

  • Updated: October 3, 2012 - 10:13 PM

WESTERN CONFERENCE FINAL (BEST OF THREE)

Lynx (27-7) vs. Los Angeles (24-10)

Game 1: 7 p.m. Thursday at Target Center, ESPN2

Game 2: 2:30 p.m. Sunday at Los Angeles, Ch. 5

Game 3 (if nec.): 7 p.m., Wednesday, Oct. 10, ESPN2

THE MATCHUP

ON THE COURT

Lynx: Good thing the Lynx are home. The defending champions have to be a little tired and physically beat up after winning a tough three-game semifinals series with Seattle. On Sunday, the Lynx lost in two overtimes on the road, then on Tuesday battled until the last possession to edge the Storm 73-72. In that game, point guard Lindsay Whalen injured her left wrist but returned. ... Forward Rebekkah Brunson is tied with Indiana's Tamika Catchings in averaging a league-high 11.7 rebounds in the playoffs. ... Seimone Augustus has become a second-half spark in the past two games, scoring 14 points and then 12 in the third quarter. ... Second-year forward Maya Moore scored 20 points against the Storm in the third game. But coach Cheryl Reeve is concerned with her defense: "She had a tremendous first half offensively. She scored 17 points. I think she probably gave up 16 points, so that is a plus-one."

Los Angeles: The Sparks had five starters who averaged in double figures during the regular season. ... The two leading scorers are the inside-outside combination of 6-4 Candace Parker and 5-7 Kristi Toliver. Parker averaged 17.4 points; Toliver's 17.5 edged her. Parker averaged 28.5 points and Toliver 26 as L.A. swept San Antonio in two games. ... The Sparks were second in the WNBA scoring at 84 points per game -- two behind the Lynx. They were 16-1 at home during the regular season, same as the Lynx, but had a losing 8-9 record on the road. ... They were 2-2 vs. the Lynx this season, winning twice at home, losing twice at Target Center.

COACHING

Lynx: Cheryl Reeve was the Coach of the Year in the WNBA last season when her team was 27-7 in the regular season and 7-1 in the postseason. Reeve has shortened her bench for the playoffs and prefers the Lynx play at a fast pace.

Los Angeles: Carol Ross became the Sparks head coach after three seasons as an assistant on the Atlanta Dream staff. Ross is a strong candidate for the Coach of the Year award this season. Last year the Sparks were 15-19 and missed the playoffs.

PREDICTION

The first team to 100 will win every game. At their best, the Lynx can run and shoot better than any team in the league, so they win in three.

ROMAN AUGUSTOVIZ

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St. Louis - WP: L. Lynn 4 FINAL
Washington - LP: J. Zimmermann 3
Toronto - WP: M. Buehrle 5 FINAL
Cleveland - LP: C. Kluber 0
LA Angels - LP: C. Wilson 2 FINAL
Detroit - WP: M. Scherzer 5
Baltimore - LP: B. Norris 2 FINAL
Boston - WP: J. Tazawa 4
Minnesota - LP: K. Correia 4 FINAL
Kansas City - WP: B. Chen 5
Cincinnati - LP: T. Cingrani 4 FINAL
Chicago Cubs - WP: E. Jackson 8
Houston 3 Top 7th Inning
Oakland 1
Milwaukee - M. Garza 6:05 PM
Pittsburgh - W. Rodriguez
Atlanta - E. Santana 6:10 PM
NY Mets - B. Colon
NY Yankees - I. Nova 6:10 PM
Tampa Bay - C. Archer
Seattle - R. Elias 6:10 PM
Miami - H. Alvarez
Chicago WSox - J. Quintana 7:05 PM
Texas - C. Lewis
Philadelphia - K. Kendrick 7:10 PM
Colorado - J. Lyles
Arizona - M. Bolsinger 7:10 PM
Los Angeles - D. Haren
San Francisco - T. Hudson 7:40 PM
San Diego - E. Stults
Brooklyn 94 FINAL
Toronto 87
Golden State 105 4th Qtr 0:38
LA Clippers 105
Atlanta 6:00 PM
Indiana
Memphis 8:30 PM
Oklahoma City
Chicago 3 1st OT 17:48
St. Louis 3
Columbus 6:00 PM
Pittsburgh
Minnesota 8:30 PM
Colorado
Houston 0 FINAL
Philadelphia 0
New England 1 2nd Half 5:00
Chicago 1
San Jose 0 1st Half 44:55
Colorado 0
Los Angeles 6:00 PM
Vancouver FC
D.C. 6:30 PM
Columbus
Toronto FC 7:30 PM
FC Dallas
Montreal 7:30 PM
Sporting Kansas City
Portland 8:30 PM
Real Salt Lake
Seattle 9:30 PM
Chivas USA
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