FCP logo

Full Court Press

FCPrep logo

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Clear As Mud: The 2011 WNBA Playoffs in a Nutshell

Article Lead Image


Caption: The 2011 WNBA Playoffs tip off on Thursday, September 15, with conference semifinals featuring the New York Liberty at the Indiana Fever (East) and the Phoenix Mercury at the Seattle Storm (West), and on Friday, September 16, with the Atlanta Dream at the Connecticut Sun (East) and the San Antonio Silver Stars at the Minnesota Lynx (West).

Image Credit: WNBA Finals Logo Courtesy WNBA Media Central




By Clay Kallam
Correspondent

You want predictions? You’re in the right place: The San Antonio Silver Stars will not win the WNBA championship.

Oh, you wanted me to tell you who was going to win? And maybe who was going to be in the Finals? Now that’s a tougher assignment, and in fact, too tough even for a “Dead Wrong in Public” veteran such as me.

The confusing, up-and-down regular season solved so little (except for proving how dumb Sheila Johnson was for firing Julie Plank and Angela Taylor and how dumb the Tulsa ownership was for hiring Nolan Richardson) that all we can offer are reasons why each of the contending teams (a) will win it all, and (b) won’t win it all.

The East

New York can’t win: The fourth seed Liberty lack inside strength and depth, and are vulnerable defensively in the backcourt.

New York will win: Two words: Cappie Pondexter.

Atlanta can’t win: The Dream shoot a dismal 26.1% from beyond the arc, and just 69.4% from the line, which will catch up to them in the postseason. And Iziane Castro Marques is truly awful 80% of the time.

Atlanta will win: Since Sancho Lyttle came back, the Dream are the team that reached the WNBA Finals last year. And Angel McCoughtry is special.

Connecticut can’t win: Danielle McCray and Kalana Greene are starters – and the bench is weak.

Connecticut will win: The Sun have the point (Renee Montgomery), the post (Tina Charles) and the wing (Asjha Jones), and no one can stop all three.

Indiana can’t win:  Erin Phillips hurt her ankle, Tamika Catchings is banged up and the post rotation of Tammy Sutton-Brown, Jessica Davenport and Tangela Smith just isn’t good enough to win three postseason series.

Indiana will win: The Fever are a veteran, talented team that will play with a serious sense of urgency – four starters are more than 30 years old, and time is running out.

The West

Phoenix can’t win: The Mercury turn the ball over too much, don’t defend and have no paint presence. In postseason, all those weaknesses are magnified.

Phoenix will win: With Penny Taylor and Diana Taurasi, Phoenix has two of the best players in the league – and don’t overlook that team free-throw percentage of 85.1. That amazing stat could turn the tide in a game or two, and that might be all it takes.

Seattle can’t win: Lauren Jackson is just a shadow of her MVP self, and Swin Cash has had a decidedly ordinary season. And the Storm are small up front.

Seattle will win: Sue Bird is the best point guard in the world, and LJ has shaken the rust off – and when those two are playing well, Seattle is almost impossible to beat.

Minnesota can’t win: The Lynx haven’t gone through the postseason fire – and Seattle and Phoenix won’t blink.

Minnesota will win: More depth, more talent, more wins than anyone. The best-regular season record, by far, will translate into a WNBA title.

So, as my mother used to say, it’s clear as mud – which if nothing else should make this postseason one of the most interesting in the league’s 15-year history.

Originally published Tue, September 13, 2011


Reader Discussion

Please Log in or, if you are not yet a member, Register to use the full features of this site.

Women's Basketball Calendar

October 2018
M T W T F S S
1 2 3 4 5 6 7
8 9 10 11 12 13 14
15 16 17 18 19 20 21
22 23 24 25 26 27 28
29 30 31 1 2 3 4

Game of the Day

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Today's Top Games

For a full calendar and related details on upcoming nationally televised and Top 25 games, as well as past game scores, and other women's basketball games of interest, click on the link "Women's Basketball Calendar" above.

Search

Try Advanced Search

NCAA DIVISION I TOP 25 COACHES' POLL
WOMEN'S COLLEGE BASKETBALL
Week: February 7, 2012
RANK SCHOOL RECORD LAST WEEK'S RANK PRESEASON RANK AP RANK POINTS
1 Baylor (31) 24-0 1 1 1 775
2 Notre Dame 23-1 2 2 2 743
3 Connecticut 21-2 3 4 3 710
4 Stanford 20-1 4 5 4 685
5 Duke 19-3 6 8 5 650
6 Miami (FL) 20-3 7 7 6 604
7 Kentucky 21-3 5 15 7 584
8 Maryland 20-3 10 10 8 534
9 Wisconsin-Green Bay 20-0 9 24 9 530
10 Ohio State 21-2 11 NR-RV
(61)
10 483
11 Tennessee 17-6 8 3 11 476
12 Delaware 20-1 13 NR 12 434
13 Georgetown 18-5 15 11 14 379
14 Texas A&M 16-5 16 6 15 378
15 Nebraska 19-3 18 NR 13 309
16 Rutgers 17-4 14 12 17 372
17 Louisville 17-6 12 9 20 276
18 Gonzaga 21-3 19 NR-RV
(70)
19 234
19 Purdue 19-5 17 21 16 222
20 Georgia 18-6 20 12 21 202
21 Penn State 18-5 21 14 18 176
22 DePaul 17-7 23 18 NR-RV
(38)
92
23 Georgia Tech 16-6 22 NR-RV
(18)
22 104
24 South Carolina 18-5 NR-RV
(13)
NR 24 46
25 Vanderbilt 18-5 NR-RV
(23)
NR-RV
(19)
NR 45
Dropped Out: No. 24 North Carolina, No. 25 Kansas.
First-place votes: Total first-place votes received (if any) are indicated in parentheses following school name.
Others receiving votes: St. Bonaventure (22-2) 34; North Carolina (17-6) 19; California (17-6) 18; Florida Gulf Coast (21-2) 16; Middle Tennessee (19-5) 15; Texas-El Paso (20-2) 8; Texas Tech (16-6) 5; Brigham Young (21-4) 4; Fresno State (19-4) 4; St. John's (15-8) 4; Princeton (15-4) 3; Oklahoma (15-7) 2; West Virginia (17-6) 2; Kansas State (15-7) 1.
Rank remains unchanged since last week
Ranking has risen since last week.
Ranking has dropped since last week.
Credit: Courtesy Women's Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA). The weekly Division I Top 25 Coaches' Poll, sponsored by USA Today and ESPN, is based on voting by a Board of Coaches made up of 31 head coaches at Division I institutions all of whom are WBCA members.