Chicago Sun-Times Latest news from the Chicago Sun-Times Online en-us (Editor) Newspapers Chicago Sun-Times 84 34 30 Copyright 2014 <![CDATA[ Sylvia Fowles out, Elena Delle Donne questionable for World Championship for Women ]]> Lead story image

The WNBA season was condensed to allow its best players to compete in the World Championship for Women, which starts Sept. 27 in Turkey. But Team USA definitely will be without one of the Sky’s top players and might be without another. Center Sylvia Fowles won’t take part because of a foot injury and other ailments, and forward Elena Delle Donne hasn’t decided whether she’ll play after suffering from a back problem during the WNBA playoffs. Numbers game The St. Louis Blues begin training camp Friday, and it figures to be a competitive environment for young players such as Wolves … ]]> Mon, 20 Oct 2014 12:10:39 -0600 <![CDATA[ Sky coach Pokey Chatman looks forward to team’s future ]]> Lead story image

There was no doubt after Friday night’s season-ending loss to the Phoenix Mercury that coach Pokey Chatman was disappointed. Like her players, Chatman wanted the Sky to prolong the WNBA Finals and continue an eventful 2014 season. But there were also signs of optimism from Chatman about the direction of the franchise. Sure, the Sky were 15-19 and only the No. 4 seed in the Eastern Conference playoffs, but her thoughts were more on what they did in the playoffs and what they could do next year. “They need to take that back to Europe, Brazil, home, wherever they’re going … ]]> Sun, 14 Sep 2014 00:10:00 -0600 <![CDATA[ Mercury sweeps Sky for WNBA title ]]> Lead story image

Brittney Griner was out with an eye injury. But the Phoenix Mercury had Diana Taurasi, and that was good enough. Taurasi’s three-point play with 14.3 left in the game broke a tie, and after Elena Delle Donne missed a potential tying three-pointer, the Mercury held on for an 87-82 win to sweep the Sky and win the WNBA Finals. ]]> Tue, 14 Oct 2014 11:41:06 -0600 <![CDATA[ Sky face daunting task down 2-0 ]]> Lead story image

The Sky are down 2-0 to the powerful Phoenix Mercury in the WNBA Finals and it’s hard to feel good about their predicament. They’ve been beaten in every area of the game and it will be an upset for them to win one game, let alone the three times necessary to steal the series. Elena Delle Donne did put up some big numbers in Game 2 on Tuesday. Wearing a new back brace, the second-year forward scored 22 points in 28 minutes. Both numbers would have been higher if not for foul trouble in the second quarter and the lopsided … ]]> Tue, 14 Oct 2014 11:13:35 -0600 <![CDATA[ Sky one defeat away from losing WNBA Finals ]]> Lead story image

Elena Delle Donne was looking like the player coach Pokey Chatman calls a superstar. After suffering through a lower back problem for the past five games, Delle Donne was playing the way the Sky needed. Then she picked up her third foul with 3:27 left in the first half, and the Phoenix Mercury were on their way to a second rout in two WNBA Finals games. Brittney Griner scored 19 points, Diana Taurasi added 18, and the Mercury took a 2-0 series lead with a 97-68 win Tuesday night in Phoenix. The Mercury can finish the sweep Friday at the … ]]> Tue, 09 Sep 2014 22:08:28 -0600 <![CDATA[ Sky know that Game 2 offers chance for redemption ]]> Lead story image

During the buildup to the WNBA Finals, Sky coach Pokey Chatman was asked about Phoenix Mercury center Brittney Griner. She offered heavy praise for the second-year star but said Griner’s dunks, as impressive as they are, count for only two points. The same idea is true of what happened Sunday. With its 83-62 win in the series opener, Phoenix showed why it could be the best team in WNBA history. It locked down the Sky offense and shot a Finals record 58.5 percent from the field, effectively ending Game 1 at halftime with a 42-20 lead. But for all that, … ]]> Fri, 10 Oct 2014 06:24:20 -0600 <![CDATA[ Sky routed in WNBA Finals opener by Mercury ]]> Lead story image

Everything that could go wrong for the Sky in their WNBA Finals debut did. Former Sky forward Candice Dupree scored 26 points, Brittney Griner had 12 points, seven rebounds and a Finals-record eight blocks and the host Phoenix Mercury routed the Sky 83-62 on Sunday in Game 1. The Sky shot 31.9 percent from the field and were dominated from the start by a team that went 38-for-65 from the field for a Finals-record 58.5 shooting percentage. Diana Taurasi, who was praised to the hilt before the series by Sky coach Pokey Chatman, scored 19 points and had 11 assists. … ]]> Sun, 07 Sep 2014 20:47:34 -0600 <![CDATA[ Sky know the three stars fueling Mercury’s rise ]]> Lead story image

Even after everything they’ve been through, the Sky are about to face their biggest challenge in the WNBA Finals. Led by Diana Taurasi, Brittney Griner and former Sky star Candice Dupree, the Phoenix Mercury ran out to a league-best 29-5 record — 14 games better than that of the 15-19 Sky. They won the most games in WNBA history and dominated along the way, going 16-1 at home and outscoring opponents by 9.41 per game, the best differential in the league by 4.94 points. The Mercury have generated talk they might be the best team in league history, and though … ]]> Wed, 08 Oct 2014 06:37:40 -0600 <![CDATA[ ‘Keeping the faith’ pays off for Sky’s Allie Quigley ]]> Lead story image

The Sky had a happy ride home from Indianapolis late Wednesday night. They had just beaten the Indiana Fever to win their first Eastern Conference title and were relishing that accomplishment. For Allie Quigley, it was particularly joyful, coming after a 24-point performance that led all scorers and helped the Sky overcome the absence of Elena Delle Donne for most of the second half. The performance was a high point in a career for the DePaul grad that has taken her to five teams, but in 2014 has blossomed, resulting in a Sixth Woman of the Year award and a … ]]> Mon, 06 Oct 2014 11:06:34 -0600 <![CDATA[ Sky headed to WNBA Finals with 75-62 win over Fever ]]>

INDIANAPOLIS — As the Sky went through challenge after challenge and injury after injury, they insisted that everything would help them in the end. During their struggles to stay in playoff contention, it was easy to dismiss the claims about building toughness and resiliency as hollow words that wouldn’t mean much after a lost season. It turns out those words had true meaning, and the Sky proved it with their 75-62 win over the Indiana Fever on Wednesday that clinched their first Eastern Conference title. “I think it’s one thing where you talk about something and it’s one thing when … ]]> Wed, 03 Sep 2014 22:15:05 -0600 <![CDATA[ Sky would host WNBA Finals at UIC with Garth Brooks booked at Allstate ]]> Lead story image

If the Sky win Wednesday and reach the WNBA Finals, their home games will not be at Allstate Arena. Due to a schedule conflict at their Rosemont home, the Sky would host Games 3 and 4 of the best-of-five series at the UIC Pavilion. Allstate Arena is booked Thursday through Sept. 14 for shows by country legend Garth Brooks. With the Sky’s two potential home games in the Finals scheduled for  Sept. 12 and Sept. 14, they needed to find another ­venue. That venue is the Pavilion, which seats 6,958 and has a full capacity of 10,075. The Sky’s court … ]]> Tue, 02 Sep 2014 23:22:26 -0600 <![CDATA[ Sky beat Fever in double OT to force decisive game ]]> Lead story image

When Sylvia Fowles spoke in the locker room after the Sky’s ­86-84 double-overtime victory Monday over the Indiana Fever, her voice was a bit softer and much raspier than usual. Clearly, she and her voice gave just about everything to keep the Sky’s season alive and force a decisive Game 3 in the Eastern Conference finals. It was barely enough. “We never got down when we were down,” said Fowles, who was 12-for-14 from the field and led all scorers with 27 points. “Everybody was talking on the bench, everybody’s energy was just going and at that point you really … ]]> Fri, 03 Oct 2014 06:29:00 -0600 <![CDATA[ Sky still trying to figure out Fever ]]> Lead story image

The Sky have overcome a lot to reach their first Eastern Conference finals. But to get to the WNBA Finals, they’ll have to rally past an Indiana Fever team that has dominated the all-time series. Entering Game 2 on Monday at Allstate Arena, the Sky are a woeful 7-31 against the Fever, including 2-4 this year and 0-2 in the playoffs last year. The Sky also never have beaten Indiana in consecutive meetings, which they’ll have to do to keep their season alive past this week. While the Sky aren’t fixating on their history with the Fever, they’re aware of … ]]> Sun, 31 Aug 2014 18:25:31 -0600 <![CDATA[ Fever hold off Sky in fourth quarter for 1-0 series lead ]]> Lead story image

INDIANAPOLIS — The Indiana Fever had to have thoughts of the Sky’s historic comeback win four days ago in Atlanta running through their minds. But, unlike Tuesday night, Indiana fended off the late-charging Sky and held on for a 77-70 victory Saturday night in the opener of the Eastern Conference finals. Indiana took a 60-48 lead into the fourth quarter, but the Sky stormed back with a 14-3 run to open the fourth. “Whether it was someone penetrating or a two-point jump shot,’’ Shavonte Zellous said, ‘‘we just needed a basket at a crucial time because Chicago had cut the … ]]> Wed, 01 Oct 2014 06:55:23 -0600 <![CDATA[ Sky’s Elena Delle Donne, Sylvia Fowles on top of their game ]]> Lead story image

As the Sky enter the Eastern Conference finals against the Indiana Fever, Elena Delle Donne and Sylvia Fowles are being rewarded after facing different challenges. Before this season, Delle Donne’s WNBA path had been smooth. She was the 2013 rookie of the year and was anointed as one of the faces of the league. But she missed 17 games this season after a flare-up of Lyme disease symptoms and will have to fight through any fatigue for the rest of the year. She made sure it was worth it Tuesday, scoring 34 points to lead the Sky past the Atlanta … ]]> Wed, 01 Oct 2014 06:46:42 -0600 <![CDATA[ Dream’s Angel McCoughtry keeps Sky from closing out series ]]> Lead story image

The Sky had the advantage they had wanted all season. All they needed was one victory on their home court and they would get their first playoff series victory and move on to the Eastern Conference finals. But because of Angel McCoughtry, a third-quarter dry spell and generally a night to forget, the Sky will have to win again on the road to prolong their season. McCoughtry scored 39 points, and the Atlanta Dream won 92-83 on Sunday at Allstate Arena in Game 2 of their Eastern Conference semifinal series. The Dream took control in the third quarter, when the … ]]> Fri, 26 Sep 2014 13:50:22 -0600