Skip to main content

High expectations for Lynx, Moore as season tips off

  • Author:
  • Updated:

Even though the Minnesota Lynx missed the WNBA finals in 2014 – the first time they'd fallen short of that mark in four years – the squad heads into the WNBA regular season Friday night with high expectations.

ESPN, the Associated Press and Sports Illustrated all expect the Lynx to win the western conference this summer, and should make a run at a third championship in five years.

Heck, even the Lynx's competition expects them to dominate.

In the annual WNBA general managers poll, two-thirds of GMs picked the Lynx as the most likely team to win the title; the same percentage picked Maya Moore as the most likely player to win MVP; and more than half of the GMs picked Cheryl Reeve as the best head coach.

Minnesota returns its main corps of stars.

There's Moore, the 25-year-old wing who won MVP and led the league in scoring last year. At point guard, veteran Lindsay Whalen, who returns after notching 5.5 assists per game in 2014, second-best in the league. Then you've got Seimone Augustus, the savvy vet and second-leading scorer on the team with 16.5 points per game last season. Plus Rebekkah Brunson, whose 8.2 rebounds and 7.2 points each game last year provided a reliable inside presence.

The biggest loss was starting center Janel McCarville. But the Lynx added 6-foot-2 veteran forward Asjha Jones, plus equally-as-tall rookie Reshanda Gray to help shore up the frontcourt.

Are the Lynx getting old?

There are questions. The one thing everyone seems focused on is age.

Whlaen (33), Augustus (31), and Brunson (33) are all viewed as on the last legs of their prime at this point.

That makes the time now for Minnesota, the Associated Press writes. When asked about how long the team could continue to compete at a high level with their current building blocks, Augustus told AP: ''We just don't know how long. It could be three, five years, who knows.

"It depends on your mental and physical state," she added. "... We have goals we want to accomplish before we take our shoes off and hang them up on our trophy cases."

Age was the crux of this Star Tribune piece – and the players sense the window will close sooner rather than later. But they told the paper they plan to get as much out of their time and talent as they can.

“We play knowing this isn’t going to last forever," Moore said. "We want to make sure there are no regrets.”

No regrets would certainly mean more titles.

This year, the team's road there will be a bit easier as Phoenix, the team that toppled Minnesota in the conference finals, is without its best player, Diana Taurasi. The 32-year-old is sitting out the season to rest, as she focuses on the higher-paying overseas women's professional basketball leagues.

Because of that, "the balance of power appears to have tilted back to Minnesota, which avoided offseason drama and will be seeking its third WNBA championship," ESPN's Sylvia Fowles writes.

The regular season begins Friday night at 7 p.m. for the Lynx, who host the Tulsa Shock at the Target Center.

Next Up

Screen Shot 2022-05-25 at 11.06.51 AM

Pilfered peony plant prompts police probe

The peony, named Patrick, was taken from Wayzata City Hall gardens.


Minnesota's COVID-19 update for Wednesday, May 25

The latest update from the state health department.


Beloved small town MN baseball field destroyed by severe storm

The mid-May storm system blasted the area with 90+ mph winds.

Ettinger and Finstad

CD-1 Primary: Jeff Ettinger gets DFL nod, Brad Finstad wins GOP vote

Jennifer Carnahan also was on the ballot as a GOP candidate — and fell about 11,000 votes shy of claiming victory.

Screen Shot 2022-05-25 at 8.01.45 AM

6-year-old and his grandparents killed in trailer home fire

"Found among the charred debris were two adults and a child," the sheriff's office said in a release.


Uvalde massacre: MN schools react with horror, increase security

A gunman killed 19 children and two adults in Texas Tuesday afternoon.

Screen Shot 2022-05-24 at 5.21.04 PM

Ex-South St. Paul coach dies by suicide 2 days before sentencing

Matthew McCollister was to be sentenced for fraud in federal court on Wednesday.


Minnesota 'glampground' named one of 10 best in U.S.

In Nevis, Minnesota, campers can stay in a refurbished 1905 train car.

Screen Shot 2022-01-28 at 9.04.12 AM

Two men charged over terrifying armed robbery at Newport apartment

They shot the woman who lives in the apartment in the abdomen, and put a gun to a man's head.

Minneapolis police

Minneapolis 2-year-old identified in suspicious death case

The cause of death has not yet been revealed due to an ongoing investigation.

Arianna Vos

Victim of wrong-way driver crash ID'd as Hutchinson 19-year-old

Three women, ages 19, 20 and 20, were in the vehicle struck by a wrong-way driver early Sunday morning.