Just one #WNBA game on Monday’s schedule and it’s a good one as the Las Vegas Aces visit the New York Liberty with a 7 p.m. ET tipoff on ESPN. It’s the last time the top two teams in the standings will play ahead of a possible WNBA Finals meeting. The SBIA model has no plays on the side with the Liberty at -1 but a solid lean on the total of 175 points as well as the first-half total of 87.5 points. It's the first time the Aces are underdogs in 2023. The over is 7-3 in the past 10 meetings.
#ALLINLV leads the WNBA with a 30-5 record, 2.5 games ahead of second-place New York (27-7). The Aces’ magic number for clinching the top spot in the playoffs is four. So, a win tonight would cut it to two.
Might the Aces be a bit bored right now? Their 82-63 home loss to New York in the Commissioner's Cup final on Aug. 15 to the Liberty didn’t count in the regular-season standings, but that started a stretch in which the Aces have gone 3-3 in their past six games. Las Vegas had three total losses in their 30 games prior. Including that Commissioner's Cup game, these teams have split four meetings this year.
Las Vegas is looking to avoid its first losing streak of this WNBA season as it was upset 78-62 at Washington on Saturday. The Mystics led 52-48 going into the fourth quarter and scored the first five points. The defending champions never got closer than five. A game after becoming the first team in WNBA history to win 30 games, the Aces were held to their second-lowest point total of the season, 31 points below their average. They lead the WNBA in scoring (92.8 ppg) but have been held to fewer than 80 points in each of their five league losses.
#LIGHTITUPNYL won its third in a row, all on the road, on Saturday by a score of 111-76 at Minnesota. Breanna Stewart scored 38 points and grabbed 11 rebounds in the Liberty’s highest-scoring game of the year. It marked New York’s sixth 100-point game of the season, adding to its single-season franchise record. The Liberty are second in the WNBA in scoring (88.9 ppg).
Despite not playing in the fourth quarter Sunday, Stewart became the sixth WNBA player to score at least 35 points four times in a season. Stewart is second in the WNBA in scoring at 23.1 ppg and either her or the Aces’ A’ja Wilson (21.9 ppg) is expected to win league MVP honors.
Wilson has won it two of the past three years and would tie a record with a third MVP. Stewart won her lone MVP in 2018 with Seattle. Wilson is set at over-under 19.5 points tonight and Stewart 22.5.