Storm sweep Mystics, win third WNBA title

Storm sweep Mystics, win third WNBA title

Storm sweep Mystics, win third WNBA title

Breanna Stewart scored 30 points and took home the finals MVP award as the Seattle Storm claimed their third WNBA title with a 98-82 win over the Washington Mystics on Wednesday, September 12.

Stewart scored and scored and scored in this series, capping her first Finals appearance with 30 points - a career high in the playoffs - eight rebounds, three assists and two steals.

Natasha Howard added 29 points and 14 rebounds.

Stewart, the WNBA's Most Valuable Player this season, added Finals MVP to her resume, which includes four NCAA titles at CT, for which she was named the outstanding player in each of them. "Obviously this isn't how we wanted it to end, but it's an experience we can grow from".

"It doesn't feel real yet, honestly", WNBA Finals MVP Breanna Stewart said after the game. While players haven't been shy about standing up for themselves, they've gotten some help from their National Basketball Association counterparts this year, which is enormous given the men's game's meteoric rise both at home and overseas over the last half decade.

Despite losing in their first Finals appearance in the team's 21-year history, Thibault and the Mystics know that the 9,000-plus fans who traveled 20 miles outside of Washington, D.C., and piled into Eagle Bank Arena know their team, for the first time in nearly a decade, has a bright future. The great thing is we can still improve.

"There's been a huge transformation with the culture of this team", said Delle Donne, who was acquired by Washington before the 2017 season.

And while it will be a much smaller building than they've been used to for years, it will be much more like the ones they've played in the last couple weeks.

"I'm going to need a lot tonight", Toliver replied. "I am really happy for her".

The top-seeded Storm led Phoenix 2-0 in the semifinals and then dropped two straight road games before winning Game 5 in Seattle. After eliminating Phoenix in a thrilling five-game series in the 2018 WNBA Semifinals, the Storm collected two triumphs in the Emerald City against Washington (89-76 on September 7; 75-73 on September 9) before defeating the Mystics on Wednesday to complete the sweep.

The Storm were WNBA champions in 2004 and again in 2010.

Despite the misfires, Washington rallied from down 18 points to trailing 72-67 with 6:49 remaining.

Elena Delle Donne and Kristi Toliver led the way for the Mystics in the loss, scoring 23 and 22 points, respectively.

Bird understands her career is nearing the end, even though she remains among the league's best.

And now, 14 years after the initial celebration, Bird is the heart and soul of yet another Seattle team that hugged and mugged and savored the trappings of ultimate victory.

"We were up at halftime, but we knew D.C. was going to come back", Stewart said. "It's a shame we couldn't give them one more home game but I feel good about this team going forward and we're a full year ahead of schedule", Coach Thibault said proudly.

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