Detroit opens it’s title defense vs. the Dream tonight. The WNBA Eastern Conference Semifinal series pits the second-seeded Atlanta team against the third-seeded Shock.
The Dream, in just their second year of existence, are making their first-ever appearance in the playoffs after posting an 18-16 record in the regular season, something that was thought to be impossible after they posted just four wins in their entire inaugural campaign.
The 1-2 opening round format, in which the lower seed plays at home first, could be a huge factor here. If veteran-laden Detroit is able to capture the opener at home, where it has won six straight, it could give them the mental edge over an Atlanta team getting a taste of the playoffs for the first time ever as a group.
Some fast facts about the first-round Shock-Dream matchup:
The second match up of the night features Los Angeles vs. Seattle in the Western Conference semifinal. The Sparks have been a thorn in Seattle’s side for years now. L.A. eliminated Seattle in a series that went the distance last season as well as in 2006. And with Tina Thompson now added to the mix, Candace Parker at full strength, Lisa Leslie motivated to win a title in her final season, the Sparks should present problems for the Storm once again in 2009.
Some fast facts about the first-round Storm-Sparks matchup:
Be sure to catch both games tonight on ESPN2!