Breanna Stewart Named WNBA Finals MVP As Seattle Storm Sweeps Washington Mystics

Heather Diaz
September 14, 2018

Elena Delle Donne, their 2016 Olympic teammate, scored 23 points for the Mystics. She missed Game 3, and while she returned for Games 4 and 5 and the entire WNBA Finals, she was a shell of her capability.

In the past year Stewart has spoken up about her assault, posed for ESPN's Body Issue (as did Bird) and won both the league and finals MVP trophies. But, as he pointed out, especially in the WNBA where a majority of players play year-round and are injury prone, winning a title takes the luck of being healthy all year.

Washington went from winning 13 games in 2016 with a.382 win percentage to finishing as runner-ups in the WNBA Finals in a year in which they won almost two-thirds of their games.

"Right from the jump, I just wanted to be really aggressive", said Breanna Stewart of the Seattle Storm after her team's 75-73 win over the Washington Mystics, which put the Storm up by two in the best-of-five series. The national team left for France on Wednesday morning, where they will play three exhibition games following two games in the the last week of preparation for the tournament. Starting with a Stewart 3-point play, Seattle countered with eight consecutive points and pulled away.

Choosing not to dwell on the team's third straight loss, or make any excuses as to how it fell on the wrong end of 3-0 WNBA Finals sweep, he was already looking ahead.

Stewart and Bird have had each had a remarkable year, culminating in a magical end to the season that's been years in the making for their franchise.

When Storm coach Dan Hughes was hired after last season he told Bird that he hoped he could get her one more.

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Stewart, who just finished her third year in the WNBA, led a strong front court effort as the Storm started to build up a lead late in the first quarter. Alysha Clark added 15 points and nine rebounds, and Sue Bird, a member of all three Seattle championship teams, had 10 points and 10 assists.

Delle Donne was also named to the All-WNBA First Team on Wednesday. Kristi Toliver had 22 points.

But what was most noticeable, from a UConn perspective, was that Tiffany Hayes of the Atlanta Dream was also placed on the first team. Bird, the oldest player in the league, ranked second in assists, guiding the team's young superstars the whole way.

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

What was billed as a battle between two of the league's most lethal three-point shooting teams turned into a one-sided display for the Storm.

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. "This didn't feel like my first trip to the Finals". I think we've really grown this fanbase.

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