Breanna Stewart is the name ringing through the WNBA finals. After the Seattle Storm lost to the Las Vegas Aces both times the teams faced off during the regular season, Stewart has played a major role in the victories that the Storm were able to achieve thus far in the finals.
The Storm are currently 2-0 in this best-of-five finals series.
Stewart finished Game 1 of the finals with 37 points, 15 rebounds and 4 blocks as the Storm secured a 93-80 victory.
“I’m excited for the big moment and the big stage. I expect to be here,” Stewart told Associated Press. “… This is why I play basketball. This is why I play, to have big games to help my team in big moments.”
Stewart nearly broke Angel McCoughtry’s WNBA finals record in scoring, but was shy of it by one point. Sue Bird on the other hand, who is also a key contributor to the Storm, broke two WNBA playoff-records by ending Game 1 with 16 assists and having 10 assists in the first half.
As the Storm are on the verge of a second championship within three years, Stewart went on to lead the Storm in Game 2 as well, ending with 22 points. The Storm, as a whole, set a WNBA championship round record of 33 assists, led by Sue Bird with 10 assists, as they defeated Las Vegas 104-91.
WNBA MVP A’ja Wilson led the Aces in Game 2 with 20 points.
Game 2 for the Aces consisted of five free-throw attempts to the Storm’s 15 attempts, alongside 15 turnovers. This Aces team is used to averaging over 23 attempts at the line, yet only managed to get five attempts, which did not sit well with coach Bill Laimbeer.
“We shoot five free throws, we shoot more than anyone in the history of league,” Laimbeer explained in an interview with Associated Press. “That was the determining factor in this ballgame. They got fouled and got calls.”
The Storm will either end the Finals series with Game 3 on Tuesday, or the Aces will push for there to be a Game 4. With either team, anything is possible.