#1 id. She shouldnt put her head down, be von sxx123 24.07.2019 08:51

ST. PAUL, Minn. -- She should have been happy, but thats not the way newly named WNBA Coach of the Year Cheryl Reeve operates. Scanning a stat sheet on the way to the postgame news conference Friday, Reeve appeared puzzled, as if the numbers didnt add up. But she couldnt figure out why.In a physical, long, brutal game that featured 54 fouls and 68 free throws, Reeves Lynx outlasted the Mercury 96-86 to take a 2-0 lead in their best-of-five semifinal. The series shifts to Phoenix for Game 3 on Sunday (ESPN, 5 p.m. ET), a contest the Mercury seem ill-equipped to win after again failing to make defensive stops at critical junctures.Yet it was Reeve who criticized her own teams defense, glossing over the 20 turnovers forced and 19 points generated off them. Two years ago, the Mercury blew the Lynx off the floor in the decisive Game 3 of the semifinals, denying the Lynx a shot at becoming the first team to win back-to-back titles since Los Angeles in 2001-02. That remains the only milestone to elude the Lynx in this run of three championships in five years.So Reeve knows what awaits if Minnesota isnt careful. Reeve had already left the Xcel Energy Center floor when Sylvia Fowles, in a postgame interview piped throughout the arena, told the sellout crowd of 11,923, Thats what home-court advantage is about. See you in the next round.Fowles presumed a series-closing victory in Phoenix, which hosts Game 3 and, if necessary, Game 4. Reeve wasnt presuming anything. Phoenix shot 45 percent from the field after making 53.5 percent in Game 1, and that wasnt anywhere close to acceptable for Reeve.I have to watch the video to really understand what happened, in terms of the things we werent able to get done, and the ease of which they scored -- again, she said. To have a chance to win on the road, we have to find a way to be, not just a little bit better, but considerably better.I dont have the mindset of going out there and winning one of two. Our mindset is to win Game 3.Friday, the Lynx muddled through a game of whistle attrition. Four fouls were called in the first two minutes, two on Phoenixs Brittney Griner. Maya Moore pumped in 14 of her 26 points in the first quarter as the Lynx jumped to a 35-24 lead. As in Game 1, Phoenix never regained the lead after falling behind in the first half, coming no closer than six points.Tonight it was about not bringing the appropriate effort and intensity right from the start to let them score 35 points, Mercury coach Sandy Brondello said. That was the ballgame. The last three quarters I think we competed and we showed we can play with them, but you cant play with the Lynx for 30 minutes. Theyre too good of a team.With the Lynx rolling, the fouls piling up and Phoenix going more than five minutes without a basket, Brondello gambled by putting Griner back in with 3:23 left in the quarter. Griner picked up her third foul defending a Moore drive in the quarters final minute. She didnt return until the second half, when she picked up a fourth foul quickly.Griner finished with no baskets, two points, and two rebounds in 18:19. This after she grabbed only two rebounds in Game 1, a total she called ridiculous and unacceptable in a playoff game.She never really got back into the game, Brondello said. She shouldnt put her head down, because she got us this far.Fowles, named the WNBAs Defensive Player of the Year earlier in the day, attacked the basket with Griner on the bench but soon committed her third foul. So did backup forward Natasha Howard.With backup center Janel McCarville unavailable because of back spasms, the rugged work fell to veteran power forward Rebekkah Brunson, who responded with her 12th career playoff double-double (13 points and 11 rebounds) in 35 minutes. Fowles nearly had a double-double herself (14 points, 9 rebounds) in only 23 minutes.I dont think I did anything exceptional, Brunson said. I dont think I did more than I do usually.Reeve disagreed.Its a tough time for your post players to be sitting next to you for so many minutes, she said. We needed every bit of Rebekkah Brunson tonight. For Natasha and Syl, anything Rebekkah wants for the next couple of days, those two need to do for her.Reeve describes herself as a worrier, and that was apparent looking ahead to Game 3. She knows Phoenix owns the leagues second-best home record since 2014 (40-11, just behind Minnesotas 44-8).She expects greatness from Diana Taurasi, who scored 12 of her 31 points in the fourth quarter. She cant presume Phoenix will shoot 2-for-12 from beyond the arc again, as it did Friday. Moore didnt score in the fourth quarter Friday, and Reeve said the former league MVP needs to be better.I hope were really smart and kind of adjust and be way more disciplined in our efforts on the defensive end, Reeve said. Offense is not going to be easy. So the mindset is, if we dont score, they dont score.Brunson conceded her coach had a point.I think we know how we want to play defensively, and I dont think weve quite gotten that done, she said.Give Phoenix a lot of credit. Theyre a great team and theyre really testing us. There are some things we can do a little bit better, some things we can fine-tune just to keep this thing rolling. We know what it is, and were going do whatever we can to get back to playing the way we want to play defense. William Nylander Maple Leafs Jersey . -- The Portland Timbers and Real Salt Lake played to a 0-0 tie Saturday night that left the top of the Western Conference standings unchanged. Darryl Sittler Jersey . Bradwell was scheduled to become a free agent Tuesday. Born and raised in Toronto, Bradwell is entering his sixth CFL season, with all six played for his hometown Argonauts. http://www.officialmapleleafsfanstore.com/authentic-john-tavares-maple-leafs-jersey/ . Burris threw two TD passes, including a key 15-yard fourth-quarter strike to Bakari Grant that effectively countered a Toronto comeback bid and led Hamilton to a 33-19 victory. Grant Fuhr Jersey . Gather a group of friends, or find a league to join online, draft your team, set your lineup and compete in a number of different formats. Felix Potvin Jersey . Peter Holland and Brad Staubitz were sent to Toronto on Saturday as the Maple Leafs traded defenceman Jesse Blacker and draft picks to the Anaheim Ducks. FLOWERY BRANCH, Ga. -- The Atlanta Falcons have placed cornerback Desmond Trufant on injured reserve and waived punter Matt Wile.The team signed center Trevor Robinson and cornerback Blidi Wreh-Wilson on Tuesday.Trufant missed the last two games with a shoulder/pectoral injury. Wile excelled in his NFL debut last week against Arizona, averaging 58 yards on two punts and having touchbacks on each of his seven kickoffs. He was an injury fill-in for Matt Bosher, who is expected to return for this weeks game against Kansas City.ddddddddddddWreh-Wilson started in 14 of his 34 games the last three years for Tennessee and was waived before the season. Robinson has spent time with the Bengals and Chargers.The Falcons also signed offensive lineman Kevin Graf to their practice squad.---For more NFL coverage: http://www.pro32.ap.org and http://www.twitter.com/AP-NFL ' ' '

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