Basketball WNBA: Seattle sacred for the 3rd time

Rex Christensen
September 14, 2018

They wanted to win one for her.

"Sue's done everything for me", Stewart told ESPN reporter Holly Rowe after the game.

"Honestly, it didn't feel like my first WNBA Finals closeout".

Stewart was unanimously selected to the All-WNBA First Team on Wednesday, the league announced at halftime of the game, the only player in the WNBA to be named on all 39 ballots. "This is all about Sue". Bird said. "That's when I knew it was over".

Winning and alcohol creates potent truth serum where confessions and secrets are revealed. One of the league's most decorated players also grasps the impact of her latest triumph.

The Mystics, on the other hand, didn't have a single player score in double figures, and only had two points off the bench.

"She never gives up".

"This has been, oddly, a very stressful playoff run", Bird said. Despite that, the basketball legend has been trying her best to help her young teammates prepare for when she's no longer there. There is no doubt in the back of my mind that the Washington Mystics will be back next year contending for a championship and now that rookies like Ariel Atkins have playoff experience, the Mystics now know what it takes to get back to the promise land. And we did that.

The American-born guard/forward, who received Australian citizenship earlier this year, was called into Australian squad on Monday to replace injured point guard Leilani Mitchell two weeks out from the FIBA tournament. Whether in the wins at Smith Center or the loss Wednesday night at Eagle Bank Arena, those have provided the kind of home court advantage that every team and fan base wishes for.

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"It didn't feel like my first WNBA finals closeout game", the poised Stewart said.

Howard was the unexpected star of Game 3, who finished with 29 points and a game-high 14 rebounds. Hayes, in her seventh season after graduating from UConn in 2012, was a second-round draft pick by the Dream. Point guard Kristi Toliver was right behind her, adding 22 points. In the end, the Storm, who dominated the regular season, proved to be the league's best team.

Of course this 2018 title was about Bird, more so than the other championships.

When Breanna Stewart left the University of CT after winning an unprecedented four straight NCAA titles, coach Geno Auriemma said that she might be the best of a long list of former UConn icons who have become WNBA All-Stars, Hall of Famers and future Hall of Famers. She truly was the MVP of these Finals.

"There's been a huge transformation with the culture of this team", said Delle Donne, who was acquired by Washington before the 2017 season.

Now Bird is a champion once again on a young team seemingly at the start of a dynasty.

"It makes it easier to go out there and play", said Loyd. You have to think big picture, and this team made a lot of great strides from last year into this year.

For years, Bird has sidestepped talk about when she'll put an end to a Hall-of-Fame bound career that includes two NCAA titles at CT, four Olympic gold medals, three FIBA world championships and four EuroLeague championships.

"This is advice", Bird said. It's not that my hunger for it went away or my motivation.

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