Thump In The Morning

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Late on Tuesday night, the Las Vegas Aces beat the Seattle Storm 97-92 in Game 4 of the semifinals to conclude what has been an all-time playoff series and advance to the WNBA Finals. This will be the Aces’ third finals appearance, and first since 2020, but they are still seeking their first title in franchise history.

Facing elimination, the Storm came out on fire and briefly looked like they were going to build a big lead in the first quarter. They were never able to pull away, though, which foreshadowed how the game would go. Neither team ever had a double-digit lead, as they once again battled back and forth until the very end.

As has been the case so often this postseason, Chelsea Gray came up clutch when it mattered most. With the game tied, 87-87, heading into the final minute, Gray hit back to back jumpers to give the Aces a five point lead. Gray finished with a playoff career-high 31 points on 13 of 22 from the field while adding six rebounds and 10 assists.

A’ja Wilson was also stellar yet again, going for 23 points and 13 rebounds on 8 of 15 from the field. Jackie Young also chipped in 18 points and came up with some much-needed baskets.

Breanna Stewart was phenomenal for the Storm in defeat, pouring in a career high 42 points on 14 of 22 from the field and 6 of 8 from 3-point land. Jewell Loyd added 29 points, as that dynamic duo combined for 61 of the Storm’s 92 points.

In the final game of her career, Sue Bird had eight points and eight assists. Down 2-1 heading into Game 4, the Storm not only had the end of their season hanging over their heads but the end of Sue Bird’s career. The Hall of Fame point guard announced her impending retirement in the middle of the season and needed a win on Tuesday night to keep playing.

Bird finished with eight points and eight assists, but also turned the ball over four times. More turnovers than she had in the entire playoffs up to this point. But while Bird was not able to walk off into the sunset with a historic fifth championship, she at least got to play her final game in front of the Seattle fans that have supported her for two decades. Congratulations Sue bird, and thank you for all you’ve done for the WNBA!

Now Lets Go Aces! Bring the championship home.