CHICAGO, ILL. – JULY 7, 2016 – The New York Liberty will look to pick up its second-straight win as it takes on conference rival Chicago on Friday night at Allstate Arena at 8:30 PM (ET).
The Liberty bounced back on Wednesday at The Garden with a 78-74 win over the Seattle Storm to improve to 13-6 overall, the third best mark in the league, in what was the first of eight games in 15 days for New York as it heads into the Olympic break.
The first meeting between the Liberty and Sky came down to the wire, as New York withstood a late Chicago charge to win 80-79, with Elena Delle Donne’s last second game-winning attempt hitting back iron. Dating back to last season, New York has won four of five meetings against the Sky.
• The Liberty bounced back from a loss at Los Angeles to pick up a 78-74 win over the Seattle Storm on Wednesday night at Madison Square Garden. New York led by as many as 18 against the Storm, and held off a late rally to secure a four-point win. Tanisha Wright scored a season-high 18 points in the win, which was matched by Tina Charles.
• Tina Charles was named the WNBA Eastern Conference Player of the Week for the third-straight week and fifth time overall this season, which ties the WNBA single-season record for wins by one player. In two games last week, Charles averaged 29.0 ppg and 9.5 rpg. She continues to lead the WNBA in scoring at 22.8 ppg.
– Swin Cash played her 464th career game on Wednesday, moving into sole possession of fourth place all-time.
– Bill Laimbeer picked up career-victory No. 199 against Seattle, and is one win shy of becoming the sixth coach in WNBA history to record 200 wins.
– Tanisha Wright is five points shy of 3,000 for her career.
• New York held off a late Chicago rally in the first meeting of the season in New York, picking up a one-point win. Tina Charles scored 21 points while Elena Delle Donne notched 31.
PLAYER TO WATCH
Liberty guard Tanisha Wright has a chance to eclipse 3,000-career points on Friday night, currently sitting just five shy of yet another milestone (she surpassed 1,000-career rebounds earlier this season). Wright has been dynamic in a variety of ways for the Liberty as of late. Known as one of the best defenders in the WNBA for the majority of her career, her offensive skills have been on full display, as she is coming off a season-high 18 points in the win over Seattle on Wednesday night.
In that game she also dished out five assists, now ranking 9th in the WNBA averaging 4.2 assists per game. Although it has not been her primary position historically, Wright has embraced playing the one for New York, and her 4.2 apg would rank as her third-highest average out of 12 years in the league.
Tina Charles saw her streak of nine-consecutive games scoring at least 20 points come to an end when she netted just 18 in a victory over Seattle on July 6. From June 11 through July 3, Charles scored at least 21 points in every game she played, a stretch that matched the fourth-longest such streak in WNBA history, and also had a pair of 30 point wins during that period, averaging 26.1 ppg overall. The record for consecutive 20 point games is 13, held by Diana Taurasi (2006-07).
Tina Charles eclipsed 3,000-career points last season, becoming the 10th fastest player in WNBA history to do so. She is steadily climbing the all-time charts for points and rebounds, as she is currently ranked 32nd all-time in scoring, with 3,823 points, and 14th in rebounding, pulling down 2,191 boards. Her career rebounding average of 10.1 per game is the best per game rate in the history of the league.