Total line started to fall down this morning from 183 points and fully agree with this movement. 3rd game of the series where the winner will be decided and we have the highest line in the history for these teams. This season bookies started from 168.5 and now line is 16 pts higher because of Phoenix crazy offense.
However I want to list few reasons why tonight game should go under this total:
1) SA is of the two teams in WNBA (2nd is Detroit) who knows how to stop run-and-gun basketball with Phoenix. Season avg. tempo for Phoenix playing at home 197.5 possessions per game. In 6 games with SA it was only 186.5 and in the playoff series we have seen slowest games with 178 and 184 posessions per game.
2) 1st game had 173 pts left with 0:50 to play but because of 8 points in last seconds it finished with 183. 2nd game ended with 184 points total but Phoenix hit 68% FG including 9/16 3-pointers. Also Phoenix surpsingly controlled the rebound and scored many easy points from fast breaks. And game finished only with 183 points because of lower tempo. If Phoenix would finish its shots with season avg. percentage (46%) or even 55% we would have under 180 game for sure.
3) Here is a game plan for Stars tonight:
“Our defensive intensity obviously has to go up a notch,” guard Becky Hammon said. “They shot the ball very well, but part of it was that we just had too many breakdowns, and they completely took advantage of it.”
Taurasi and Cappie Pondexter (19.1 in the regular season) have a combined 72 points in the series, under their combined average, but Phoenix’s bench — led by Penny Taylor and DeWanna Bonner — has 84 points and 42 rebounds in the two games.
“Diana and Cappie are going to get their points. We have to limit the points of players off the bench and the role players,” Young said.
“The separation (in Game 2) happened with their bench,” Hughes added. “There are a couple of things you can do. You look at a little bit of your matchups in those situations, and we will do that.”
For Stars game plan is to play tougher defense on Phoenix bench players. Phoenix scored only once more than 95 pts to SA basket this season so statistically Stars can defend under 95 points against this run and gun team.
On other side Phoenix is more than capable to defend under 85 points at home. This season the allowed more than 87 points (todays line for Stars) only 4 times in 18 home games.
I think that we should see more defense from both teams in deciding encounter and according to my calculations this game should end in the 168-178 pts area.
Prediction: Phoenix 92 – 84 San Antonio
Pick: Under 182.5 @ 1.85 BETFAIR