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WNBA Energy Rankings – Chicago Sky again at No. 1, however playoff image nonetheless coming into focus

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We all know this a lot within the remaining WNBA Energy Rankings of 2022 because the common season enters its final week: No group has thrown within the towel, even the Indiana Fever, who’ve lengthy been eradicated from the postseason. Everyone seems to be battling to the very finish.

The defending champion Chicago Sky, one among 5 groups which have already clinched a spot within the playoffs, are again on prime of our rankings.

The Dallas Wings have been the one group with an ideal file this previous week, they usually have all however clinched a postseason berth.

5 different groups are nonetheless within the working for the playoffs.

One among them is the Minnesota Lynx, who acquired an enormous carry on Sunday with the return of Napheesa Collier, again after giving start to a daughter in Might. Minnesota’s victory over the Atlanta Dream helped hold alive the Lynx’s hopes for the playoffs, which they have not missed since 2010, when Collier was beginning eighth grade.

The Fever have misplaced 16 video games in a row and have not received since June 19, however they pushed Dallas to extra time on Saturday. The Wings triumphed within the further interval, they usually now have a .500 file. That is no small accomplishment for Dallas this late within the season.

The franchise has completed at .500 or higher simply as soon as (2015 in Tulsa) since transferring from Detroit after the 2009 season. The group has been in Dallas since 2016 and has reached the playoffs 3 times however hasn’t received a postseason sport.

The Los Angeles Sparks had a grueling four-game Japanese time zone highway swing this previous week and had misplaced six video games in row. However the Sparks someway managed to get a win on the Washington Mystics on Sunday to maintain their playoff hopes alive.

Groups are nonetheless taking part in for home-court benefit within the postseason, and lots of the particular person awards are doubtless but to be determined in voters’ minds. All of it will make for an intriguing remaining week earlier than the common season ends Sunday and the playoffs, which function eight groups, start Aug. 17.

Earlier rankings: Preseason | Week 1 | Week 2 | Week 3 | Week 4 | Week 5 | Week 6 | Week 7 | Week 8 | Week 9 | Week 10 | Week 11 | Week 12 | Week 13

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Candace Parker drops 18 factors and two blocks to develop into the fifth WNBA participant to succeed in 600 blocks within the Sky’s victory over the Solar.

1. Chicago Sky
Report: 25-8
Earlier rating: 2

The Sky have the league’s finest general and residential file, however they misplaced simply their fourth sport this season at Wintrust Enviornment on Tuesday, falling to Dallas. A type of dwelling losses was to Las Vegas on July 26 within the Commissioner’s Cup remaining, which does not rely within the standings however contributed to the Sky dropping to second final week. Nonetheless, they adopted the loss to the Wings with victories over Washington and Connecticut. Chicago now has received six in a row towards the Solar relationship again to final 12 months’s playoffs. Chicago is within the driver’s seat to clinch home-court benefit all through the upcoming playoffs however wants to complete robust.

This week: vs. Seattle (Tuesday), at Las Vegas (Thursday), at Phoenix (Sunday)


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A’ja Wilson makes it look straightforward with a phenomenal step-back soar shot.

2. Las Vegas Aces
Report: 23-10
Earlier rating: 1

The Aces completed a difficult highway swing with a win over Seattle on Sunday that stored them in second place within the WNBA standings and our Energy Rankings. It was the final of 5 consecutive away video games for Las Vegas, and it adopted losses at Washington and Dallas this previous week. The defeat towards the Wings actually stung, because the Aces had an opportunity to tie the rating and ship the sport to extra time on an A’ja Wilson layup try that she in all probability would make 99 out of 100 occasions. However this one missed. How did Wilson react? She had 29 factors and 6 rebounds to beat the Storm, offering extra gasoline for her MVP candidacy. The Aces now end at dwelling.

This week: vs. Atlanta (Tuesday), vs. Chicago (Thursday), vs. Seattle (Sunday)


3. Connecticut Sun
Report: 22-11
Earlier rating: 3

The Solar are 8-3 because the All-Star Sport, with the one defeats coming to Las Vegas and Chicago (twice). Each these losses to the Sky have been by simply three factors, together with Sunday’s defeat. The Solar began this previous week with robust back-to-back wins over Phoenix, and now they’ll head to the West Coast for a back-to-back with the Sparks.

This week: at Los Angeles (Tuesday), at Los Angeles (Thursday), vs. Minnesota (Sunday)


4. Seattle Storm
Report: 20-13
Earlier rating: 5

It was a really sentimental week in Seattle. Former Storm legend Lauren Jackson was in the home on Wednesday to see a win over Minnesota, and a franchise-record sellout of 18,100 was there on Sunday for Sue Chook’s remaining regular-season dwelling sport, a loss to Las Vegas. We talked about Wilson’s MVP candidacy; Seattle’s Breanna Stewart continues to be going robust there too, as she had a mixed 68 factors and 18 rebounds within the two video games. Jewell Loyd struggled towards the Aces (0-of-6 from the sector), however she is aware of what it can take for a robust Storm end, and odds are she’s going to assist present that.

This week: at Chicago (Tuesday), at Minnesota (Friday), at Las Vegas (Sunday)


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Jordin Canada blocks the last-second heave, however a foul is known as, then later waved off by the refs to finish the sport.

5. Washington Mystics
Report: 20-14
Earlier rating: 4

What began as an excellent week with a 10-point win over Las Vegas ended on a bitter word in a loss to struggling Los Angeles, with a defeat at Chicago in between. Mystics guard Natasha Cloud seemed to be fouled on a 3-point try with about two-tenths of a second left towards the Sparks on Sunday, and it will have despatched her to the road with an opportunity to tie the rating. No foul was referred to as, and Cloud set free her frustration on social media by calling the officers “trash” and telling the league to nice her. That appears certain to occur. And if the Mystics have a look at their 38.5% taking pictures general, together with 3-of-15 from 3-point vary, it is arduous to only blame officiating, even when some calls might need been incorrect. Ending with back-to-back video games towards the last-place Fever might ease the Mystics’ irritation.

This week: at Indiana (Friday), vs. Indiana (Sunday)


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Teaira McCowan drops in an OT bucket for the Wings

6. Dallas Wings
Report: 16-16
Earlier rating: 7

We wrote every week in the past in regards to the Wings simply treading water, however that has modified. They took flight with wins over Chicago, Las Vegas and Indiana. Within the first two contests, Dallas star Arike Ogunbowale was sidelined with an ankle harm. And the Wings completed off the third sport together with her having to go away the courtroom after 25 minutes because of a hip harm. Heart Teaira McCowan has come into her personal, getting double-doubles in her previous 5 video games. Guard Marina Mabrey additionally had an enormous week, averaging 19.7 factors and 5.0 assists in these three video games. We’ll see how lengthy Ogunbowale is sidelined; she is out for Monday’s sport.

This week: vs. New York (Monday), vs. New York (Wednesday), at Phoenix (Friday), at Los Angeles (Sunday)


7. Phoenix Mercury
Report: 14-19
Earlier rating: 6

It was an emotionally powerful week for Phoenix that ended on word. The Mercury had back-to-back losses at Connecticut; earlier than the second sport, they watched the distressing nine-year jail sentence given to teammate Brittney Griner on a reside stream from Russia. However then they returned to their favourite place — Footprint Heart in downtown Phoenix — the place even with out Skylar Diggins-Smith (sickness) and Diana Taurasi (quad harm) they beat New York. The Mercury end the common season with three extra video games at dwelling, which ought to assist them.

This week: vs. Minnesota (Wednesday), vs. Dallas (Friday), vs. Chicago (Sunday)


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Cheyenne Parker will get the powerful and-1 bucket for the Dream.

8. Atlanta Dream
Report: 14-19
Earlier rating: 10

Atlanta righted the ship by going 2-1 this previous week after 4 consecutive losses, getting wins over Indiana and Los Angeles earlier than falling at Minnesota. Accidents hold whittling away on the Dream. However they’ve been in a position to rely on Rhyne Howard all season, whereas fellow rookie Naz Hillmon has come on in current weeks. Now, can they safe a playoff spot?

This week: at Las Vegas (Tuesday), vs. New York (Friday), at New York (Sunday)


9. Minnesota Lynx
Report: 13-20
Earlier rating: 8

The Lynx have received three of their previous 4 — after dropping 4 of their earlier 5. So, yeah, it has been peaks and valleys for Minnesota. Collier returning this season is an emotional carry. Can the Lynx now shut with a surge to get heart Sylvia Fowles into the playoffs another time?

This week: at Phoenix (Wednesday), vs. Seattle (Friday), at Connecticut (Sunday)


10. New York Liberty
Report: 13-19
Earlier rating: 11

There are a whole lot of methods for voters to have a look at the WNBA’s Most Improved Participant Award, however the Liberty’s Sabrina Ionescu is unquestionably a robust candidate. The 2020 winner of that honor, Betnijah Laney, returned to motion on Saturday for New York after being out since Might because of knee surgical procedure. Each Ionescu and Laney have been visibly bummed after Saturday’s 14-point loss at Phoenix, which got here after two wins over Los Angeles. However New York nonetheless has its playoff hopes in its arms with 4 remaining video games towards groups additionally striving for the ultimate postseason spots.

This week: at Dallas (Monday), at Dallas (Wednesday), at Atlanta (Friday), vs. Atlanta (Sunday)


11. Los Angeles Sparks
Report: 13-20
Earlier rating: 9

Simply when it seemed as if the Sparks have been going to fade into the sundown after one other difficult season, they grabbed a possible playoff lifeline by beating the Mystics on Sunday. Can Los Angeles shut the season with three victories at dwelling to push for the postseason? They do have a three-game successful streak earlier this season, so it isn’t not possible.

This week: vs. Connecticut (Tuesday), vs. Connecticut (Thursday), vs. Dallas (Sunday)


12. Indiana Fever
Report: 5-29
Earlier rating: 12

This is not an empty platitude: Give the Fever credit score for a way arduous they hold competing — which is not straightforward while you’re solely taking part in for satisfaction and your final win is to this point within the rearview mirror. With simply two video games left, Indiana’s dropping streak might end at 18 in a row. However that will not be the file for the WNBA’s longest (20 by the Tulsa Shock in 2011).

This week: vs. Washington (Friday), at Washington (Sunday)

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