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Stewart, Storm sweep Mystics for WNBA title

14 September, 2018, 04:55 | Author: Rachael Silva
  • Storm forward Breanna Stewart signs autographs for fans before game one of the WNBA Finals as the Seattle Storm take on the Washington Mystics at Key Arena in Seattle Friday

League MVP Breanna Stewart scored 30 points in the victory and was selected Finals MVP after averaging 25.6 points through the three games. Rightfully so, the team's 3-0 sweep of the Washington Mystics in the Finals caught the attention of National Basketball Association stars such LeBron James and Kobe Bryant, among others.

But the score won't come close to telling the true story.

"We feel like we have a lot of young, great talent", Delle Donne said.

But the Storm have yet to win on the road in the playoffs, despite posting the best road record in the regular season. After losing a combined 39 games in her first two seasons, including a pair of single-elimination playoff losses, the perennial victor knew it was time for a change. Alysha Clark added 15 points and nine rebounds, and Sue Bird, a member of all three Seattle championship teams, had 10 points and 10 assists. So for me to be here now, not that I didn't enjoy the other ones, but I'm just truly enjoying this right now. Obviously the kid knows how to win.

The Mystics, in their first Finals in franchise history, were far from disgraced rallying from 18 points down to trail 72-67 with 6:49 remaining. She's figured it out. "There is probably no comparison to be honest". Seattle landed Jewell Loyd and Stewart, both All-Stars in 2018 with Bird, with the No. 1 overall picks in 2015 and 2016 respectively.

"I think this was our year", Hughes said.

The answer came almost four months later with a championship.

"We can't relax", Storm forward Natasha Howard told the Seattle Times. Howard capped her breakout season with 29 points (on 11 of 14 shooting) with a game-high 14 rebounds.


"We know how great the teams are and how much better we have to be", said Delle Donne, who finished with 23 points.

The Storm outscored the Mystics 26-14 in the second quarter to extend their lead to 46-30 at halftime and never looked back. They cut the lead down to eight points in less than two minutes, which forced a Storm timeout and time to regroup.

But Stewart was fouled by Delle Donne while making a jump shot from the free-throw line on the next possession and converted the three-point play, sparking an 8-0 run to put Seattle back in control. "They're not in the Finals for no reason".

"We don't want to go [back] to Seattle to play", Stewart said. That got us before. We had a calm presence about us. We all know that.

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.

Bird was a linchpin in 2004, when the Storm took their first title, and a stalwart in 2010, when they won again. By the time starting center LaToya Sanders sprained her ankle while saving a loose ball, eventually getting carried to the locker room, the game had largely gotten away from Washington. She was back in familiar territory, back to the normal feeling of winning at the highest level.

It's only fitting she closed out the season with a double-double. But there was a bigger sense that Stewart was where she belonged. Stewart, the MVP, and Loyd carried the scoring for much of the season, combining for almost 40 points per game. And with Stewart just turning 24 a few weeks ago, she is likely destined for the same. Now, Washington has seen what it takes to win a championship. "Not now. We know they're going home and they'll feel good about being at home in front of their fans".

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