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Chasity Melvin

WNBA Legend

WNBA Finals What We Learned in Game 4

We learned without a shadow of a doubt, that Maya Moore is going for 4. Maya finished with 31 points, 9 rebounds, 5 assist and 3 steals forcing a game 5 in the WNBA Finals. This isn't the Minnesota Lynx first game 5 but it will go down as it's most historic if they beat the LA Sparks and tie the Houston Comets with 4 WNBA titles. Maya Moore simply rose to the occasion as only the 1st lady of the Jordan Brand could. It wasn't just her prolific scoring that led the way, but her ability to do the little things. She was the first Lynx player to dive for loose balls and was the 2nd most aggressive player on the glass after her teammate Sylvia Fowles who finished the game with 13 boards.  Seimone Augustus and Lindsay Whalen chipped in with double digit scoring with 12 and 13 points respectively but Maya Moore is the reason that Minnesota Lynx continue to "Roar for 4".                                                                                       

Maya Moore 1st ever woman to sign with the Jordan Brand rocks the Air Jordan 31 PE in Lynx colors.

The Los Angeles Sparks crumpled in the last minute of the game with unforced turnovers and their  questionable shot selections. Candace Parker and Nneka Ogwumike didn't touch the ball down the stretch and the Lynx did a great job defensively keeping the ball out of their hands. Candace Parker couldn't build off her success and dominance in game 3 and finished with only 14 points and 3 rebounds. Chelsea Gray would have been the team X Factor had they won the game finishing with 20 points and hitting 4-5 behind the arc. Gray wooed the crowd by draining  high arching 3 pointer after 3 pointer and had the fans and myself thinking it was definitely the Sparks time to rise. Then in the last 35 seconds they had a monumental collapse ignited by a  Candace Parker  turnover. The refs missed an 8 second count in the back court and a possible game defying block was called a foul on Candace Parker.  The Los Angeles Sparks would love to have those last few possessions back. They had 5 players in double figures, Magic and Kobe were sitting court side and the Sparks fan were ready to erupt. Instead the Sparks players were stunned and the series heads back to the home court of the defending champions.

Will the Sparks have chance to get those moments back and win a championship?

Maya Moore tied Sheryl Swoopes at 7th place with the highest individual scoring total in the WNBA Finals. Can she tie Sheryl Swoopes with 4 WNBA championships Thursday at 8 pm ET on ESPN 2?  We've learned that the Lynx are on mission in their  "Roar for 4", while the Los Angeles Sparks believe it's their "Time to Rise". What we do know is Thursday night will be an epic battle between two teams very hungry for a championship.  Game 5 will be a showdown  of who will become WNBA championship bound. I expect this to be a physical battle and a remarkable game that will only add to the highlights of the WNBA 20th season.

Looking forward to watching these ladies work. Game 5 ESPN 2 8:00 pm Et

Thanks for reading and in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month. I would like to encourage those that are fighting to stay positive and keep the faith. I would also like to give strength and courage to each person affected by this disease in some way. Please feel free to check out my story below on how my late mentor, coach and friend inspired me in her fight against breast cancer.

Click on the picture and check out Rise Above in Every Way. Find out how Coach Kay Yow inspired me.

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WNBA Finals what we learned in Game 3

Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Candace Parker posted big numbers in the Los Angeles Sparks  Game 3 win of the WNBA Finals against the Minnesota Lynx scoring 24 pts on 11-19 shooting and pulling down 9 boards to go along with a pair of 2 blocked shots. Parker and the Sparks were the aggressors from the opening tip  in Game 6 punching the Lynx in the mouth from the start.  WNBA MVP Nneke Ogwumike followed up with 21 points 9 boards 3 steals and 3 assist. The ladies in purple and gold were resilient throughout the game weathering each run by the Lynx with the hot shooting from Essence Carson who went 4-4 from behind the arc finishing with 16 points.  Alana Beard again ignited the defensive spark and kept Lindsay Whalen from orchestrating the Lynx offense. She also chipped in 15 boards off cuts to the baskets and steals on defense.  The Sparks executed Brian Agler's defense to perfection and the Minnesota Lynx failed to overcome it.

Essence Carson rose to the occasion in Game 3 of the WNBA Finals....
Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

The All-Star, Olympian studded back court  for the Minnesota was frustrated by Essence Carson and Alana Beard for much of the game.  Maya Moore and Seimone Augustus each finished with 9 points. Sylvia Fowles dominated the paint and did all she could defensively imposing her will with 14 points and  5 blocked shots but will have to have another Finals MVP performance tonight. Rebekkah Brunson added 14 but had no answer for Candace Parker inside the paint and can only hope to contain her tonight as she goes for her 1st ever WNBA title. The Lynx poor shot selection, turnovers, and lack of aggression resulted in theme facing a must win situation tonight at the Staples Center. The Maya Moore and Seimone Augustus tandem will have to be spectacular for the Lynx to force a game 4 and  continue their "roar4four".  The Lynx have been historically too  skilled, too versatile, too dominant in the WNBA for many years . Will they rise to the occasion tonight or will they collapse on the brink of elimination.

Will the Minnesota Lynx collapse again under the stifling defense from the Sparks.
Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

Candace Parker can end a year of revenge from being cut from the Olympic team , and fulfill expectations put on her since she was drafted as LA's #1 draft pick back in 2010. Tonight at 8:30 the LA Sparks will determine if they are WNBA champions. These teams know each other well and tonight's game really comes down to who wants it more. Brian Agler , Alana Beard and Candace Parker each have something to prove if only to no one but themselves the reason  they were bought together in LA. Sometimes in sport timing is everything. tonight we will find out if indeed the Sparks were right about this year being their time to rise.  Tonight at 8:30 Et on ESPN at the Staples Center we will find out if it's LA time to shine.

Team that  Wins Tonight

4 Players or more have to be in double figures

Must win on the Offensive Glass

Limit TO's

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WNBA Finals What we learned in Game 2

Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

Seimone Augustus broke out of her slump and scored 14 points as the Minnesota Lynx tied the series beating the Los Angeles Sparks 79-60 in game 2 of the WNBA Finals. Maya Moore was a steady threat controlling the offensive flow scoring 21 points and 12 rebounds and making the Lynx look like not only the defending champions but champions to be. Sylvia Fowles 13 points and 15 rebounds  again reigned supreme inside the paint and MVP Nneke Oqwumike had no answer for her. We learned in game 2 that the Lynx are tough to defend when they are making  signature mid range jumpers from anywhere. The front court defense was formidable and they also dominated the glass giving the team multiple second chance points.

Sparks were searching for answers in Game 2 against the Minnesota Lynx.
Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

Candace Parker struggled and was non existent in the 2nd half finishing with 6 points and 4 rebounds in the Sparks lost. Only Alana Beard from the supporting cast stepped up offensively for the Sparks scoring 13 points and  was only 1 of 2 players to finish the game in double digits. The Sparks have plenty of reason to feel uneasy after this game.  They found themselves in foul trouble and had no help from the bench.  Nneke Ogwumike scored half of her points on easy buckets in  transition and finished with 14 points and 12 rebounds. What we learned is that the Sparks can't win without Parker and the one sided help from the supporting cast isn't going to bring them a championship. The hardest part of this series was winning a game in Minnesota for the Sparks and they did that. Going back home they are going to have to play with a sense of desperation and hungriness to defend home court.

Maya Moore couldn't be stopped and Moore definitely wants championship number 4
Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

Maya Moore is offense unleashed. Nneke Ogwumike is the WNBA MVP. Game 3 on Friday will be a battle in which the stars will need a great supporting cast.  Who will win the battle of the boards? Who will have multiple players in double figures? Which team wants it more? We learned tonight that Minnesota isn't going to give away their crown. If the Sparks believe that this is their year then they will have to take it. Game 3 is Friday in LA and will be televised on ESPN 2 at 9pm ET.

The famous saying "Basketball Never Stops"  is so true. As the WNBA season comes to an end, the NBA preseason begins. Players young and old have contributed so much to this game and it's great to see them still involved whether it be on or off the court. Former WNBA Legend Adrienne Goodson is passionately working towards a career in coaching and finds time to work a Full Court Press clinic on behalf of the National Basketball Retired Player's Association. The NBRPA is dedicated to helping former and retired players transition to other careers and provide them the opportunities to give back to the games and reach kids around the world. Check out this article below on how some of the former players are affecting our community in a positive way. 

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