Sunday, July 27, 2008

Totally Eclipsed by the Sun

The Mystics played a competitive first quarter of basketball against the Sun today, down only 3 (20-17) at the end of ten minutes. But they ended that first period with a missed layup (which could have closed the gap to 1) and after that, the game went steadily downhill.

At halftime, Connecticut was up 40-29. Neither "franchise player" Alana Beard nor "No. 2 scoring option" Mo Currie hit a field goal in the entire first half, heading into the locker room with 1 point and 2 points, respectively. Meanwhile, Nakia Sanford (signed to a multiple year contract in the off season) played only 6 and a half minutes of the first half. She joined Alana and Mo in the locker room after scoring 2 points and picking up 3 fouls.

Things only got worse after the break. While the BasketCases and, no doubt, many others in the arena kept waiting (and hoping) for our stars to shine, it was not to be. At the end of the third quarter, the Mystics were down 66-45. At that point, AB had scored 4 points and Mo was still at 2 (in fact Coach J-Law sat Mo on the bench for most of that period). The final score was 82-60.

Only two Mystics reached double figures today. Team leader Taj McWilliams-Franklin, who shows up night after night, had 11 points, and rookie Crystal Langhorne, coming off the bench, had 10. AB finished with 7 points on 2 of 12 shooting, and Mo had only the 2 points she scored on free thows back in the first quarter. As for Nakia, she finished the game with 3 points, fouling out after about 13 minutes of playing time.

Former Mystics first-round pick Asjha Jones led all scorers with 27.

While there is no question that most of the Mystics are playing with greater effort under Coach J-Law, there is also no way that the Mystics will win games when Alana and our other veteran supposed scorers have games like they had today.

This loss drops the Mystics to 10-16. Unless they win all 8 of their remaining games (a theoretical, but highly unlikely, possibility), they will, once again, finish the season with something other than a winning record. Déjà vu all over again!

The Mystics' defeat today was not just a loss, it was a bad loss. It sends the team -- not to mention the fans -- into the Olympic break on a very low note. While we prefer not to be too negative, we also try to be honest. And being honest, we can't say that we ran into anyone on the concourse after the game who was disappointed about taking a break from this team or this season, nor did we talk to anyone who was particularly excited at the prospect of seeing them again in a month. As longtime fans, we find that very sad . . . very sad, indeed.

6 Comments:

At 7:10 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nakia Sanford is a nice, generous person. Nakia Sanford needs to be replaced. Her astonishment at being called for fouls and her total inability to make free throws has become painful to watch and fails to contribute anything of value to this team.
At this point of the season, I'd keep Taj, Langhorn, and Coco. BeMo, C/Krystals, and Kendra have potential. Everyone else is up for trade.
If you're not part of the solution, you're part of the problem.

 
At 9:57 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is there a worse General Manager in the history of the WNBA? I don't think so.

LINDA MUST GO!

And Alana must grow up.

 
At 5:54 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't mind watching a team lose--that happens. But I do mind watching a team quit before the game is over. I do think Alana is a big part of that quitting attitude, so I agree with the commenter above that she needs to grow up and be a professional. She can find a great model right on her own team: Taj. At this point I would rather be an Atlanta fan this season--they have lost almost all their games, but they play with heart.

 
At 7:14 PM, Anonymous Stewart said...

I've said it before and I'll say it again. If this was Atlanta, I could "excuse" it, given that it's an expansion franchise. But, this roster is full of veterans and has way too much talent to be playing this badly. I don't understand it at all. I must admit that I left after the third quarter because I knew it wasn't going to get better. I agree with the poster above who said another change needs to be made in the front office.

 
At 9:39 PM, Blogger posting-up said...

I was really disappointed in Alana. There were several offensive sets in the second half where she jogged down court and stood around. Not moving to the ball, not helping out when a teammate got double-teamed. Just stood there! She took herself out of the game.

Every night I am more impressed with Taj. Great effort. Passion. Encouragement for her teammates -- and PRODUCTION! For my season ticket money, we can rebuild this team around her and Langhorne.

We're very fortunate to have them both right now.

 
At 5:51 AM, Blogger BasketCases said...

To Posting-Up:

We noticed the same thing about Alana and it really bothered us. Missing shots is one thing, but a lack of effort is inexcusable. We hope that Coach Kenlaw read her the riot act about that after the game.

-- BC

 

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