GIQ WNBA Previews — Conference semifinals: Detroit Shock at Atlanta Dream, Los Angeles Sparks at Seattle Storm

by Frisco Del Rosario on September 18, 2009

In the best-of-three conference semifinals, both #3 seeds won on Wednesday, meaning the #2 seeds face two elimination games at home, while #2 Seattle carries on without the best player in the world, and #2 Atlanta finds themselves with a diminished home court advantage because a Sesame Street production pushed them out of Philips Arena.

Detroit Shock at Atlanta Dream

Game 1 in Detroit will be remembered for this decision by the Atlanta coaching staff: The Shock led 90-89 with 16 seconds left, when Shock guard Deanna Nolan was fouled and shooting free throws, but left the game with lightheadedness. That enabled the Atlanta coaches to choose a Shock player to shoot the free throws, and they opted for Crystal Kelly, an 85 percent shooter, but whom they believed was cold at the end of the bench. Kelly hit both to push the Shock lead to three points.

When the Dream follow a road loss at home, they are 2-1 SU and ATS, 1-2 O/U. (Coincidentally, both wins are against Connecticut.) In one of those games, they hit the over (like they did in Game 1), and followed with an under at home that wasn’t even close. When Detroit follows a home win on the road, they are 3-4 SU and ATS, 4-3 O/U.

Los Angeles Sparks at Seattle Storm

The Sparks’ win at home on Wednesday dropped the Storm’s record since Lauren Jackson’s knee injury to 3-4 SU and ATS. Los Angeles’ big two — Lisa Leslie and Candace Parker — both put up double-doubles.

When the Storm follow a road loss at home, they are 4-1 straight up, but 2-3 against the spread, 3-2 O/U. When the Sparks go on the road after a home win, they’re 2-1 SU and ATS, 0-3 O/U.

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