Augustus again playing like finals MVP

  • Article by: KENT YOUNGBLOOD , Star Tribune
  • Updated: October 10, 2013 - 1:00 PM

Fueled by 2012 fade, veteran guard Seimone Augustus is playing like the leader she's counted on to be. The Lynx take a 2-0 lead in the best-of-five series into Thursday’s game with Atlanta.


Seimone Augustus of the Lynx sized up Angel McCoughtry of the Atlanta Dream during the first quarter of Game 2 of the WNBA Finals on Tuesday, October 8, 2013.

Photo: Kyndell Harkness, Dml - Star Tribune Star Tribune

CameraStar Tribune photo galleries

Cameraview larger


Seimone Augustus is sorry if she keeps flashing back to the past. Really, she is.

The Lynx had just dropped a second consecutive 25-point victory on the Atlanta Dream on Tuesday night at Target Center, a victory in which Augustus led the way. She scored in the paint, on the run, off picks, an efficient performance that even Dream coach Fred Williams admired.

Augustus? She still was drawing from the disappointment of 12 months ago.

“I hate to keep bringing up last year,” she said. “But it still sits in the back of your mind. I know it sits in the back of my mind. I’m just happy to be able to play good basketball after what happened last year.’’

The Lynx have been using last year’s loss to Indiana in the WNBA Finals as motivation all season — nobody more than Augustus. She was the finals MVP in 2011 when the Lynx swept Atlanta for the title. A year later just about everybody thought the Lynx would make it two in a row against the Fever. Four games and three losses later it was Indiana hoisting the trophy.

And Augustus took that hard. Still the leader of the team, she had shot 6-for-30 in the final two games of that series. That sort of thing sticks with a player.

But Augustus is well on the way to purging that experience. And so are the Lynx, who take a 2-0 lead in the best-of-five series into Thursday’s game with the Dream at the Arena at Gwinnett Center in Duluth, Ga.

The longest-standing member of the Lynx — she was the first overall pick in the 2006 WNBA draft — the one player still around for many of the franchise’s difficult years, is putting herself in position to possibly win another series MVP trophy.


Taking over finals

Maya Moore is the team’s leading scorer throughout the playoffs, a wonderful run in which she has averaged 20.5 points per game on 52.9 percent shooting. But in the finals, Augustus has taken another step. She has scored 39 points in two games on 18-for-27 shooting (66.7 percent) with nine rebounds, five assists and two steals.

And that’s just half of it. Against Phoenix in the Western Conference finals, Augustus was asked to guard Mercury star Diana Taurasi, who ended up shooting 10-for-35 in two games. Against Atlanta, especially Tuesday, Augustus guarded Angel McCoughtry, who is shooting 11-for-42 in the finals.

Before the playoffs started Reeve told Augustus it was her time. Look at the response.

“When we get to the playoffs it really is about her play,” Reeve said. “Because she has a gift that Maya doesn’t have, that Lindsay [Whalen] doesn’t have, which is the ability to put the ball in the hole in a one-on-one situation. When you get to the playoffs it’s about making plays. And that is right up Seimone’s alley.’’

Tuesday morning the Lynx coaches were convinced that Moore was the player headed for a big night. But when Moore struggled with her shot early, Reeve started calling one play after another for Augustus. And the Dream couldn’t stop it.

“She moves around a lot,” Williams said. “She comes off curl cuts, pot shots off the elbow. A lot of times its off their five-player sets and you can’t switch out on that. She can read the defense. She’s kind of a Reggie Miller type, able to look and see where she needs to go.’’

And get there.

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions


Buffalo 12/28/14 12:00 PM
New England
Cleveland 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Dallas 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Indianapolis 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Jacksonville 12/28/14 12:00 PM
San Diego 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Kansas City
NY Jets 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Chicago 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Philadelphia 12/28/14 12:00 PM
NY Giants
New Orleans 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Tampa Bay
Carolina 12/28/14 3:25 PM
Detroit 12/28/14 3:25 PM
Green Bay
Oakland 12/28/14 3:25 PM
Arizona 12/28/14 3:25 PM
San Francisco
St. Louis 12/28/14 3:25 PM
Cincinnati 12/28/14 7:30 PM
Washington 102 FINAL
New York 91
Oklahoma City 114 FINAL
San Antonio 106
Cleveland 91 FINAL
Miami 101
LA Lakers 93 FINAL
Chicago 113
Golden State 61 3rd Qtr 3:54
LA Clippers 67
DePaul 69 FINAL
Loyola Marymount 72
Ohio 58 FINAL
Nebraska 71
Colorado 66 FINAL
Hawaii 69
George Washington 60 FINAL
Wichita State 54
Central Mich 48 FINAL
Western Ky 49
Fresno State 6 FINAL
Rice 30
Illinois 12/26/14 12:00 PM
Louisiana Tech
Rutgers 12/26/14 3:30 PM
North Carolina
NC State 12/26/14 7:00 PM
Cincinnati 12/27/14 12:00 PM
Virginia Tech
Duke 12/27/14 1:10 PM
(15) Arizona State
Miami-Florida 12/27/14 2:30 PM
So Carolina
Boston College 12/27/14 3:30 PM
Penn State
(25) Nebraska 12/27/14 7:00 PM
(24) USC
Texas A&M 12/29/14 1:00 PM
West Virginia
Oklahoma 12/29/14 4:30 PM
(18) Clemson
Arkansas 12/29/14 8:00 PM
Notre Dame 12/30/14 2:00 PM
(22) LSU
(13) Georgia 12/30/14 5:45 PM
(20) Louisville
Maryland 12/30/14 9:00 PM
(9) Ole Miss 12/31/14 11:30 AM
(6) TCU
(21) Boise State 12/31/14 3:00 PM
(12) Arizona
(8) Miss State 12/31/14 7:00 PM
(10) Georgia Tech
(19) Auburn 1/1/15 11:00 AM
(17) Wisconsin
(7) Michigan State 1/1/15 11:30 AM
(4) Baylor
(16) Missouri 1/1/15 12:00 PM
(2) Florida State 1/1/15 4:00 PM
(3) Oregon
(5) Ohio State 1/1/15 7:30 PM
(1) Alabama
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters