The Las Vegas Aces and Phoenix Mercury face off on Wednesday in game 1 of their first-round matchup of the WNBA playoffs at Michelob ULTRA Arena. This is a best of three series, with the Aces hosting the first two games. When these two teams faced off on May 21st, it was the Aces that secured the 100-80 victory.
The Las Vegas Aces come into this game with a 26-10 record overall, and they are the number one seed in the playoffs. On Sunday, against the Seattle Storm, the Aces scored 109 points and that was enough to win by nine points. Two games ago against the Chicago Sky, the Aces were able to secure the 89-78 victory. The Aces are averaging 90.4 points, while their defense is giving up 84.1 points per game. The offense is ranked 1st in the league, while their defense is ranked 9th. Las Vegas wants to push the pace, but at times their defense struggles. If they are going to struggle in this game, it’s probably going to be the defense that has let them down. Kelsey Plum has been the top player for the Aces, averaging 20.2 points while shooting 46 percent from the field.
On the other side of this matchup is Phoenix, who sits with a 15-21 record overall, and they are really banged up heading into this game. Skylar Diggins-Smith is dealing with a personal matter and is not expected to be playing in this game. Diana Taurasi is dealing with a quad injury, and it’s unclear her status for this game. In the last game against the Chicago Sky, the offense only managed 67 points, and that led to the defeat. Phoenix is averaging 81.1 points, while their defense is giving up 84.1 points per game. The offense is ranked 7th in the league, while their defense is ranked 9th. Diamond DeShields is averaging 13.1 points per game.
Phoenix is so banged up right now, they aren’t going to have enough offense to keep this game close. The Aces are averaging 90.4 points per game, and they are going to have no issue running up the score in this game. The Mercury isn’t going to keep up, and Las Vegas will cover the spread. Back the Aces against the spread.