Basketball News: The Atlanta Dream and the league’s leading scorer Tina Charles host the Washington Mystics on Friday night, who is still aiming to win a postseason position with only four games remaining; tune in live from midnight on Sky Sports Arena or Mix.
The Washington Mystics will host the struggling Atlanta Dream on Friday night, hoping to keep their playoff hopes alive and pull out of funk, but they will be short-handed for the game.
Elena Delle Donne, the two-time MVP who returned from a nearly two-year layoff due to back concerns in late August, will miss her fifth straight game after departing midway through a defeat to Dallas on August 26.
According to Mystics coach Mike Thibault, there’s a potential she won’t play this season at all because of nerve soreness in her surgically repaired back.
“I’m not sure if she’ll play this weekend,” he continued, “and I’m not sure about the rest of the year.” I’m not sure yet.”
Delle Donne had two back operations and opted out of the 2020 season, giving her a 22-month layoff before returning to the WNBA on August 22.
With less than a week remaining in the regular season, Washington (10-18) finds itself half a game behind the New York Liberty for the final playoff spot.
The Mystics were defeated 105-71 against the Seattle Storm on Tuesday, their fourth loss in five games and third in a row (all by double-digit scores).
In his postgame press conference, Thibault said, “There’s nothing positive to say about this game other than let’s go home and regroup and try to figure out some things.” “Right now, there are no moral wins.”
Tina Charles, a leading contender for the WNBA Most Valuable Player award with averages of 23.9 points and 9.3 rebounds per game, had just four points and four rebounds on Tuesday while committing three mistakes.
Center Megan Gustafson is coming off one of her greatest professional performances, with 12 points and eight rebounds, after being signed to a seven-day contract in June to address Washington’s lack of frontcourt.
The Mystics will try to re-establish Charles alongside Gustafson against Atlanta (7-21), the first of their last four games and the only one against a team that is presently out of the playoff picture.
With a 69-64 win over Dallas on Sunday, the Dream ended an 11-game losing streak that began on July 2, but followed that up with a 76-75 loss to Phoenix on Tuesday. Atlanta was outscored 21-14 in the fourth quarter and lost on three free throws given up in the final seconds due to a foul beyond the arc.
“It was unlucky with the last play. I’ll take responsibility for it “During the postgame press conference, Elizabeth Williams said. “Unfortunately, this isn’t our first close call. It’s now simply an issue of showing maturity and professionalism and ending the season strong.”
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