The Seattle Storm won the inaugural Commissioner’s Cup earlier this month.
They already have clinched a playoff berth with a month left in the regular season.
But they aren’t on cruise control to the postseason.
The Storm are coming off a road trip on which they lost three of five games as they host the Chicago Sky on Friday night. That trip started with an overtime loss on Aug. 15 in Chicago, which will stay in the Seattle area for another match-up Sunday.
“I think this road trip was a grind, and we just have to refresh, regroup and take care of business,” Storm coach Noelle Quinn said. “We wanted to finish it out with more wins than losses.”
They had an opportunity to do just that after splitting the first four games, but they ended with a 76-70 loss at Minnesota on Tuesday.
Breanna Stewart led Seattle (18-8) with 18 points. Jewell Loyd had 15 points and Sue Bird scored 10. But the Storm shot just 37.8 percent from the floor, including 33.3 percent on 3-pointers.
“Sometimes, you have off nights,” Bird said.
The Sky (12-12) are in the midst of a five-game road trip of their own, which began with an 86-79 victory Tuesday in Atlanta.
“We’ve all got to have that confidence that this is go time, and this is the time when we’re going to be our best,” said Allie Quigley, who led Chicago with 21 points. “I think we’ll find out what we’re made of and I think we’re ready for the challenge.”
Quigley, who had scored 27 points in each of the prior two games, made 8 of 11 field goal attempts and all three 3-pointers against Atlanta.
“It’s just one of those times when you’re in a groove and feeling good,” Quigley said.
Candace Parker returned from a one-game absence due to a sprained ankle to add 18 points and nine rebounds.
“(Parker is) important in what we do so it gives me a sense of calm when she’s out there,” Sky coach James Wade said.
–Field Level Media