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WNBA: Storm, Aces run it back following Seattle’s win

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The Seattle Storm and the Las Vegas Aces, two teams expected to be near the top of the WNBA pile come season’s end, will square off for the second time in four days on Tuesday night in Everett, Wash.

The Storm rolled to a 97-83 home win over Las Vegas on Saturday in a season-opening matchup of the two squads that played in the league championship series in 2020. Breanna Stewart tallied 28 points and 13 rebounds in the victory, with Jewell Loyd scoring 22 and Sue Bird racking up 11 points for Seattle.

Pundits have predicted that the Aces, buoyed by A’ja Wilson (last season’s MVP) and the return of All-Star center Liz Cambage after she missed 2020, will be the top team in the WNBA this year.

But Seattle showed it’s still formidable and will be tough to knock off the throne, even with a reshuffled lineup and growing pains.

“We came into the season the last four to five years knowing what our identity was. Now we’re having to re-establish that and figure it out,” Bird said. “We’re going to have ups and downs, but it can only get better from here, and what a great start.”

The Aces were led by Wilson’s 24 points in Saturday’s loss while Cambage scored 16, Jackie Young added 12 points and Kelsey Plum had 11 points.

Saturday’s game was a contrast in styles, with the Storm wanting to push the pace and spread the floor and Las Vegas working to pound the ball into the paint to take advantage of its size and strength.

“Once we get there, we’ll be pretty good. … This road to the championship is going to be so, so hard,” Wilson explained.

Aces coach Bill Laimbeer said after the loss that his team is likely to take some lumps in the early going as it works to build chemistry and momentum.

“We’re not a cohesive team like Seattle is right now,” Laimbeer said. “It’s going to take us some time.”

–Field Level Media

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