WNBA rewatch: Brittney Griner scores 32 as Mercury win big at home
Fever struggle to score in Phoenix, drop to 0–2
Brittney Griner would finish with 32 points and 10 rebounds in 30 minutes Wednesday night. She didn’t score in the game’s first 6 minutes, so we’ll call it 32 points in 24 minutes. To put it even simpler: Phoenix could do no wrong at Talking Stick Resort Arena, cruising to victory. Griner was able to get any shot she wanted. Even when Indiana showed signs of sending a hard double, she made a quick move and scored.
The Mercury really blew the game open in the 2nd after Griner checked back into the game at the 7:35 mark. Phoenix led by just 6. Indiana couldn’t get a shot to fall, but they were getting to the line.
Diana Taurasi got off to a nice start with 7 early points. Stephanie Talbot hit an off the bounce three and Camille Little got some easy ones inside:
That’s a great screen by Taurasi. You can see that Danielle Robinson knows it’s going to be open as she waits with the ball on the right wing.
Candice Dupree drew a nice ovation as she returned to town. Dupree fared better from the start than she did in the team’s opener in Seattle. She dropped in a driving hook over the late contest from Griner:
Shenise Johnson struggled in this one after a monster performance in Seattle, but words cannot do this pass justice:
That is a PHENOMENAL pass. Slow-mo is mandatory for that one (hover over the video, right click, 1/4). Dupree finishes the job going with the reverse to neutralize Griner’s shot blocking ability.
I highlighted a Tiffany Mitchell score following an Iverson cut from the Fever’s opener. Here’s the same initial action:
An easy Mitchell score or drop off is an obvious best case scenario. If the pick and roll stalls out, Mitchell feeds it to Dupree to go to work with half the floor to herself as she did there.
Ah, what could have been
Final note goes to more great screening by Diana Taurasi. She sets a back screen for Leilani Mitchell (11 points, 7 assists) and the Indiana defenders decide to switch it. Taurasi seals that defender perfectly to beat the switch. A quick lob will lead to a layup. One problem — Cayla George got whistled for a travel before delivering the pass. Maybe another time.
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