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I mean, what else can you even say? Two MVP candidates going head-to-head; the most clutch shot-maker in the world going superhuman for four straight games; maybe the most legendary point guard of all time playing her final game; two former players coaching against each other. Aces-Storm was absolutely perfect and the only shame is that we didn’t get a fifth game.
It was none other than Aces guard Chelsea Gray, who is undoubtedly the hottest-shooting player the history of NBA or WNBA basketball has ever seen in the playoffs so far, who decided she had seen enough. Her 31 points led all scorers and she did it on 13-of-22 shooting with 10 assists and just three turnovers. A’ja Wilson scored 23 points with 13 rebounds, and Jackie Young scored a ridiculous 18 points on 5-of-6 shooting.
The Aces’ 97-92 win showed they were every bit as good as we thought they were back in May when they were tearing through the league. Coaching one of the best offenses of all time, Becky Hammon showed what could be unlocked with a new scheme centered on 3-point shooting and fast-pace sets. Even the Storm, a team armored with three stars who’d won championships before (two rings since 2018 even) couldn’t hold them for very long.
Breanna Stewart gave it her absolute all, scoring 26 points on 9-of-12 shooting in just the first half. She finished with 42 points — a playoff career high — while Jewell Loyd finished with 29 points. Bird, in what was her last game ever, scored eight points with eight assists.
The Aces will await the verdict of Sky-Sun Game 5 on Thursday night at 8 p.m. ET on ESPN2 to find out who they’ll play in the Finals, but for now, they can relish a victory over one of the most tough-to-stop groups the W has seen. Though they’ve already avenged a 3-0 Finals loss to Seattle in 2020, they still have to win the thing. A series against Jonquel Jones or Candace Parker won’t be easy.
But damn, that was a series we’ll never forget, with three games decided by five or fewer points and a fourth game that went into overtime. A group of some of the world’s best put on a masterclass.