At the end of Lynx shootaround this morning, the team helped center Sylvia Fowles celebrate her 30th birthday with a cake.
Perhaps the best present Fowles could get would be a win tonight in Game 2 of the best-of-five series, which Indiana leads 1-0. And the best way to do that might be limiting the Fever’s second-chance points. Sunday the Lynx out-rebounded the Fever 34-32. And the offensive rebounds were basically even, Indiana with 12, the Lynx 11.
But the Fever had a 22-12 edge on second-chance points, with 12 of those coming on four three-pointers.
So what happened? Well, Fever star Tamika Catchings only was credited with six rebounds, but she got herself in position to tip a lot of balls, creating 50-50 loose ball situations the Fever inevitably won. And the Lynx post players sometimes allowed Fever players to get too deep.
“I thought the times we got hurt it was little bit of that,” Lynx coach Cheryl Reeve said. “And then we need to be mindful. The same way they’re locked in on Rebekkah (Brunson) not getting stuff cleanly, we have to do a better job early on players like Catchings.’’
Easier said than done. “She’s going to get some of those,” said Brunson, who did a good job defending Catchings, who only had two field goals. But Brunson only got three rebounds all night. “But you just have to be aggressive. And if she taps it to another area, we have to be ready to gain that rebound.’’
Said Reeve: “We can’t just say, ‘OK, we have to rebound.’ We can’t just talk about it. It doesn’t change anything. We’re trying to figure out how we can get people in better positions to do that. Sometimes that requires a switch on a ball screen. Now a guard has to hook around and really hit ‘em early.’’