Lynx to play new kind of 'analytic scrimmage'


The Lynx are gearing up for their first preseason game Tuesday against the Mystics, where they'll play a normal scrimmage followed by a second game with some different rules.

The game is dubbed an "analytics scrimmage," which will change up the rules for two 10-minute periods of play.

NBA teams have been using analytics for several years now, collecting data like how fast players run up and down the court, how many times they dribble or pass the ball on each possession and which spots on the court are more likely to result in baskets made.

These two WNBA teams are taking it one step further by actually playing with different variables.

The first period focuses on "modified location scoring." Mid-range shots won't count and will result in loss of possession.

The second period will have "modified pacing rules." The shot clock will be reduced from the WNBA's standard 30 seconds to 20 seconds.

The points will change up too in that second period. See more details below:

The event is closed to the public and won't be televised, but media members are welcome, CSN Washington reports.

In the NBA, data analytics is a trend that is still growing, according to the Boston Globe. Every team has installed SportVU cameras — one positioned over each basket, two over each sideline — in their arenas to capture the movements of the basketball, the players on the floor, and the referees 25 times per second throughout a game.

All that data is then sent to computer servers and ultimately to data analysts on each team who use it to try to gain a competitive edge.

But according to the Globe, some teams are bigger fans of using analytics than others, and there may be a point at which some of the information collected is just not that useful except for answering trivia questions.

Lynx gearing up for season

The Lynx are staying busy before the season starts. Their itinerary after Tuesday's scrimmage includes fan events.

On Friday, May 29, five Lynx players will surprise a group of Wishes & More kids at the science museum, the Associated Press reports.

The Lynx host a preseason game against the New York Liberty at 7 p.m. Monday, June 1.

Then on Wednesday, June 3, the team hosts a fundraiser at for the Lynx FastBreak Foundation at the Loop in St. Louis Park players and coaches will be servers, and all food and drink sales will go to charity.

The Lynx regular season starts on Friday, June 5. They host the Tulsa Shock at 8 p.m. at Target Center.

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