Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Mystics Lose Another Close One

By the time the Mystics took to the court at the Staples Center in LA last night for a 10:30PM ET tip-off against the Sparks, the Chicago Sky (despite getting 22 points from Kristi Toliver off the bench) had already lost to Phoenix, giving Washington the opportunity to climb back into playoff position with a win. Unfortunately, the Mystics couldn't capitalize, and fell to the Sparks 69-72.

The BasketCases did not stay up to watch this game, but by all accounts the Mystics fought back late in the game from a double-digit deficit to nearly pull out a W. So while the Mystics were once again competitive (something missing last summer) they couldn't quite seal the deal.

The LA Times story is here, the AP story is here, and the box score is here.

A couple of things stand out from the box score: it appears the game was once again lost at the foul line. Only this time, it wasn't lost at the Mystics' line (Washington hit an unspectacular but respectable 71%); it was lost at the Sparks' line, where they took -- and converted -- 9 more FTs than the Mystics did. Washington was called for 10 more fouls than the Sparks were, including a controversial call (according to message board posters) where an initial call of a jump ball, which the Sparks were arguing should've been a time-out before the tie-up, became a foul charged to the Mystics! The second thing we noticed was the rebounding margin, 35-25 in favor of the Sparks. Frankly, that doesn't come as a major surprise. Let's remember that this was the Sparks, with a frontline of Lisa Leslie, Candace Parker, Tina Thompson and DeLisha Milton-Jones. Most teams struggle against a line-up like that. And so did the Mystics.

Like the Mystics, the Sparks are also fighting hard for a playoff berth. With the season winding down, the LA Times said it best: "Both teams are on the edge of either slipping through a closing door into the postseason or having the door slam in their face." Last night, the Sparks helped themselves toward that door. On Friday, the Mystics need a big win in Phoenix to help keep that door from slamming shut altogether.

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Thank you readers for the eyewitness comments you added to the post below.


At 9:16 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am so glad that dcbasketcases has been soooo supportive of the entire Mystics new organization. Angela Taylor, Coach Plank, and the basketball girls have shown alot of class; excitement; hardwork; and competitiveness. I thoroughly enjoyed watching the support and also the enthusiasm from the fans. Keep up the positive spirit and in the long haul good things will come to this organization.

At 9:29 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm so glad I found this blog! I go to Mystics games by myself because my husband doesn't like sports and my friends are more interested in the Nats. Honestly, I just don't get it--this is an amazing team, and so fun and inspiring to watch--even during a slump.

At 3:09 PM, Blogger nsw43 said...

I watched the game last night and it was as frustrating as the one on Sunday -- totally winnable but booted by stupid mistakes.

With 10 seconds left and only 3 points down, the Mystics were unable to even get off a shot!

I've been a big fan of Harding but she doesn't manage the clock well, and she's pretty hopeless at the end of the game.

But I still love the Mystics!

At 4:26 PM, Blogger fr mike said...

PEACE! I love the Mystics! I love DC BasketCases and all the love they bring to the Mystics and the game."I am so glad that dcbasketcases has been soooo supportive of the entire Mystics new organization." Now one thing about the LA game last night, my favorite AB made 6 turnovers!!! How can we help her?

At 6:05 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The black could aka the Mystics curse is still overhead. I don't know if it will ever totally go away.

As long as they put out maximum effort, I'm ok win or lose.

p.s. does anyone think Cheryl Swoopes could help us with our playoff push?

At 6:33 PM, Blogger BasketCases said...

Dear fr mike,

" favorite AB made 6 turnovers!!! How can we help her?"

We were thinking maybe a Novena?


At 7:07 PM, Blogger fr mike said...

PEACE! "We were thinking maybe a Novena?


YES! Beautiful suggestion from beautiful people. I'll try it. Get the curse off the team too.

At 8:54 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"does anyone think Cheryl Swoopes could help us with our playoff push?"


At 9:13 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

But Sheryl Swoopes could.

At 9:05 AM, Blogger BasketCases said...

fr mike,

"I'll try it."


And while you're at it, could you put in a good word with St Anthony? Marissa has temporarily lost her game. Maybe he could help her find it. :-)


At 11:57 AM, Blogger fr mike said...


At 12:04 PM, Anonymous stevo said...

It's all mental for Marissa... The fear of injury bug has a hold on her...

At 1:51 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why isn't Marissa getting more minutes? I know she hasn't played great but it's hard to get into the flow of things if you aren't getting many minutes?

At 2:32 PM, Blogger BasketCases said...

"Why isn't Marissa getting more minutes?"

Dear Anonymous,

In the last 5 games, Marissa has averaged a little more than 14 minutes a game, a decent amount of time for a reserve, and enough time to "get into the flow of things." She's taken a total of 20 shots but made only 2. Simply put, until Marissa gets out of her slump, she won't be much help in these really tight games, and Mo is playing better defense.

-- BC

At 2:57 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

wow...I didn't realize the #'s. I guess she is in a slump! Hope she comes out of it soon. She was my favorite player at MD and know she has potential to be a very solid if not great player.

At 5:35 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Marissa will be more than a solid player. She will be a terror. They will not want to see her coming, but it probably won't be this season. I'm just hoping she will pull out of her slump and just be able to help the rest of this season. I think it's going to happen soon. Hurry up with those Novenas:-)


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