GAME: Seattle (0-1) at Los Angeles (1-0). WHEN: 7:30 p.m. Tuesday. WHERE: Staples Center MEETING: 2nd. TV: None.
A gruesome second half collapse will need to be erased quickly from the collective memory of the Seattle Storm Tuesday as they engage in a rematch with the Sparks in Los Angeles following the season opening 72-66 loss at Key Arena.
After the Storm managed just 10 points in the fourth quarter, Sue Bird didn’t seem especially troubled despite surrendering a late 21-point lead. In her view, LA’s 30-10 run was a product of too many turnovers leading to easy baskets. The Sparks scored 30 points off 27 Seattle giveaways. Bird feels her team’s scoring struggles will diminish when players become accustomed to their offense as the season progresses.
“As the season goes day-by-day you’re going to see us get better,” Bird said Friday night. “Obviously adjustments are just running our offense more, getting more comfortable in it, getting where you’re not thinking- you’re just playing. As basketball players you can think too much. That’s when things get out of sorts.”
In addition to running the offense, Bird will be faced with shutting down LA’s Kristi Toliver. Toliver came off the bench Friday to torch Seattle, dropping 10 of her 25 points in the fourth quarter while dishing out six assists. Her step-back three with under a minute to play gave the Sparks a four-point lead Seattle was unable to overcome.
SERIES: Seattle is 16-18 at home and 24-31 all-time against LA.
COMING UP: The Storm head to Minneapolis Sunday for an afternoon tilt against the Minnesota Lynx.
LOS ANGELES STATS/NOTES:
COACHES: Brian Agler is in his fifth season as Seattle’s head coach. Carol Ross is in her first season as LA’s head coach.
SEATTLE STORM 2012 SCHEDULE/RESULTS
|5/18/12||vs. Los Angeles||L||66-72||0-1|
|5/22/12||at Los Angeles||—||—||—|
|6/3/12||at Los Angeles||—||—||—|
|6/9/12||at San Antonio||—||—||—|
|6/22/12||vs. San Antonio||—||—||—|
|6/30/12||at New York||—||—||—|
|7/7/12||at Los Angeles||—||—||—|
|8/18/12||vs. Los Angeles||—||—||—|
|8/26/12||vs. New York||—||—||—|
|9/14/12||at San Antonio||—||—||—|
|9/21/12||vs. San Antonio||—||—||—|