Published: Thu, September 13, 2018
Sports | By Johanna Francis

On cusp of 3rd WNBA title, Seattle Storm not about to relax

On cusp of 3rd WNBA title, Seattle Storm not about to relax

This is likely just the beginning for the dynamic 24-year-old forward, who won the NCAA Championship during each of her four seasons at the University of CT. "We're one of the best 3-point shooting teams in the league". It was a rare show of emotion from a normally reserved Bird, and the 14 points she dropped in the fourth, including four threes, to send the Storm to the Finals set social media ablaze.

Both teams were 6 of 18 (33.3 percent) from the field in the first quarter.

The three-year veteran connected on 9 of 20 shots, including 4 of 5 from long range. The Storm know they won't be able to completely neutralize Washington's star tandem, which is averaging a combined 23.5 points in the best-of-five series, but Seattle must look to limit their touches and attempts.

It was close at the start of the second quarter, and then it wasn't after Stewart took over and scored nine points in the period. Yet less than a minute later, the Storm had the lead back to 15 points, completely shutting the Mystics down.

The top five markets were: Seattle-Tacoma (3.6), Hartford & New Haven (1.7), Washington, DC (1.2), New Orleans (0.9), Memphis (0.9). From there, it was smooth sailing to the 16-point win.

For Bird, a member of a Seattle's championship teams in 2004 and 2010, this third title feels different.

"She's kind of helped me get to this point, and like you said, if there was one person on this team that I wanted to win it with it was her". "But we got better throughout the year".

But it was also a coming out party for Stewart, the league MVP, who delivered time and again.

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Seattle guard Jewell Loyd had just six points on 2-for-11 shooting, but it didn't hurt the Storm.

Forward Natasha Howard added a career-high 29 points and 14 rebounds for the Storm.

Fairfax, Va. • Sue Bird and Breanna Stewart fretted following the regular-season opener after the Seattle Storm lost at home to the Phoenix Mercury.

"You can't be unsuccessful if you're in the Finals", Kristi Toliver said.

After defeating the Atlanta Dream in the previous round of the WNBA playoffs, the Washington Mystics embarked on their first Finals appearance in franchise history.

The three-time WNBL All-Star with the Perth Lynx is now a WNBA champion after making her American league debut for the Storm at age 28 last season.

In her MVP summer, Stewart ranked second in the league in scoring (21.8), third in rebounding (8.4), seventh in blocked shots (1.44), and eighth in steals (1.35) during the regular season.

Delle Donne was also named to the All-WNBA First Team on Wednesday.

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