After a super-competitive Game 2, which needed an extra five minutes to decide a winner, Game 3 was a one-sided affair from very early on.
The Chicago Sky put on a defensive masterclass, clinching Game 3 by a dominating margin of 36 points. They restricted the Phoenix Mercury to just 50 points, not allowing them to score more than 14 in any one of the quarters.
"The entire city showed up. I mean I pulled up to the game and people were lined up 2-3 hours before."@Candace_Parker on the ELECTRIC Chicago crowd 🔊- WNBA (@WNBA) October 16, 2021
We can verify, the crowd was LIT 🔥 pic.twitter.com/wzVmUbtbq8
While they made 30 of their 60 field goals (50 percent efficiency), the visiting Mercury squad only managed to knock down 16 of their 62 shot attempts for a sub-par 25.8 percent efficiency. In fact, Phoenix's dismal shooting included going just five of 20 from beyond the 3-point arc.
"We got our butts kicked tonight," Phoenix coach Sandy Brondello said. "It's disappointing. They were really, really aggressive. We still got some open looks and missed them. We lost momentum and they grew a lot of confidence. It rattled us a little bit. We've got to be better."
Britney Griner, who scored 17 points, was the only player to score in double figures as the Mercury finished Game 3 by recording more turnovers (17) than assists (11).
On the flip side, Chicago were faring far better. They nearly shot 50-40-90 shooting splits as a team and assisted on 22 of their 30 made field goals.
The domination began early and it was led by guard Kahleah Copper, who scored 20 of their 22 points in the first half.
Yeah, soo let's talk about @kahleahcopper!!- WNBA (@WNBA) October 16, 2021
Kah is COOKIN' with 20 points to end the first half, and is 6-for-8 from the field 🤐
📺 ESPN2 pic.twitter.com/IBqJkxAXEq
Courtney Vandersloot recorded 12 of the team's 22 assists, Candace Parker added 13 points as every Sky player to check into the game scored before the final buzzer.
The Chicago franchise, which has lost just twice this postseason through nine games including this one, is one win away from their first title in franchise history and avenging their Finals loss at the hands of the Mercury back in 2014.
"I was telling my team. I'm 0-2 in Game 4 closeout at home," said Candace Parker. "I don't want that to continue. We know they are a fantastic team and they'll come out and be ready. Come back stronger."
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