While the Las Vegas Aces are looking to build on their most dominant performance of the season, the Minnesota Lynx need to end their longest skid of 2019.
The visiting Aces can win back-to-back contests for the first time this season by handing the suddenly struggling Lynx a fourth consecutive defeat Sunday night.
With LeBron James, Chris Paul and Russell Westbrook watching courtside, Las Vegas (3-3) put on quite the show with a 100-65 rout of the visiting New York Liberty on Friday night. Guard Kelsey Plum broke out of her early-season struggles with a season-high 19 points on 8-of-11 shooting while Kayla McBride scored 18 and Liz Cambage added 17.
The Aces shot 54.1 percent for the game, after scoring 35 first-quarter points and shooting 67.6 percent in the first half, while exacting some revenge on a Liberty squad that beat them 88-78 at home five days earlier to snap a 17-game losing streak. Each of Las Vegas' three wins have come by at least 13 points, but it has not been able to string anything together early in a season filled with lofty expectations.
"Our starters showed what they can do," Vegas coach Bill Laimbeer told the club's official website. "It's only one game, one half.We've got some confidence boosting going on right now with our ballclub, and we're on to Minnesota."
That's were Las Vegas will find a Lynx team that's 1-4 following a 3-0 start. Minnesota's latest setback came at home, 85-81 against Connecticut on Friday. Odyssey Sims (13.5 points per game) had 25 points, but the usually stout Lynx defense allowed the Sun to make 33 of their 66 field-goal attempts, score 44 points in the pant and outrebound them 36-26.
"Doing the things we like it do, it just got lost on us (Friday night)," coach Cheryl Reeve, whose club has allowed an average of 83 points during the three-game losing streak, told the Lynx's official Facebook page.
"Relying on our team to execute offensively right now is not where our bread is buttered. It's something we have to improve upon."
Minnesota (4-4) might be feeling the void left by star Maya Moore's decision not to play this season, forward Rebekkah Brunson's uncertain basketball future and Seimone Augustus' knee issue. The Lynx are now in danger of losing four straight overall and three in a row at home for a second consecutive season.
Minnesota won two of three against Las Vegas in 2018, but that lone defeat came at home. McBride (17.3 pp.) had 24 points, nine assists and seven rebounds while the Aces shot 49.2 percent in the 85-77 win at Minnesota on July 13.