In the opening game of the 2018 WNBA season, two Western Conference squads that both made it to the playoffs last season are clashing, when the Phoenix Mercury, who made it all the way to the league semifinals where they got eliminated by the Los Angeles Sparks 3-0, are hosting the Dallas Wings, who were eliminated in the first round by the Washington Mystics. WNBA Dallas Wings vs Phoenix Mercury Spread and Prediction.
Date/Time: 05-18-2017 22:00 EDT
Spread: Phoenix Mercury -5
Phoenix Mercury finished last season with an 18-16 record (16-17-1 against the spread). Phoenix were placed third in the Western Conference and 5th overall in the league. In the playoffs they eliminated Seattle Storm in the first round of postseason play. The Sun were swept by the Los Angeles Sparks in the playoff semifinals. The Mercury were led in scoring by Brittney Griner with 21.9 ppg. Griner adds team highs both in rebounding with 7.6 per game and in total blocks with 65. She was followed by Diana Taurasi with 17.9 ppg. While Monique Currie added 10.2 ppg.
Dallas Wings finished the regular season with a 16-18 record (18-16 ATS) and were placed 4th in the Western Conference 7th overall in the league. In the playoffs they got eliminated in the first round by the Washington Mystics with an 86-76 score. They were led in scoring by Skylar Diggins-Smith with 18.4 ppg, adding a team high of 198 total assists. Diggins-Smith was followed by Glory Johnson with 14.9 ppg and a team high 9.1 rebounds per game, while Alisha Gray added 13 ppg and 3.9 rebounds per game.
Mercury led the Wings 2-1 wins last season and both teams split wins in Phoenix. Team Mercury won with a 107-65 score and Wings won with a 58-68 score. Mercury were 9-8 at home last season which was the worse among all teams that qualified in the playoffs, while Wings were 6-11 on the road. The Wings had the best offense in the league, scoring 86.1 ppg to Mercury’s 81.9 but they also had the worse defense, allowing 88.8 ppg to Mercury’s 81.9.
Team Mercury had better percentages both in field goals (44% to 40.6%) and in 3-pointers (33.9% to 31.9) and dished more assists (17.6 to 15.7), while Wings were better in rebounding (34.5 to 32.1). Mercury are stronger on paper and Vegas odds give them a -5 spread and expect them to beat the odds for an opening home victory tonight.
Dallas Wings vs Phoenix Mercury Prediction: Phoenix Mercury -5 (-104)
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