Lynx-Sky Preview

Minnesota has locked up the best record in the WNBA, which means the top seed and home-court advantage throughout the playoffs.

The Lynx (26-5) will be spending the final week of the season fine-tuning their game with the hope of making a deep run in the postseason.

Chicago also has secured a spot in the postseason, but their future is much more uncertain. The Sky, the Indiana Fever and the Atlanta Dream are tied at 16-15 and the three are fighting for the fourth seed and a bye in the first round.

The Sky can stay alive for that elusive fourth seed with a win over the Lynx when the two meet Tuesday night at Allstate Arena in Rosemont, Ill.

But the task, which normally would be challenging, became much more difficult during the past week for the Sky, who will be without reigning league MVP forward Elena Delle Donne.

The league's second leading scorer and Chicago's MVP candidate will undergo surgery on her right thumb hours before Tuesday's game.

The Sky don't know how long Delle Donne will be out.

Delle Donne, who averages 21.5 points per game as well as 7.0 rebounds, was injured in a Sept. 7 game against Washington.

Chicago will need more from Cappie Pondexter, who scored 24 in Sunday's playoff-clinching win. Guard Allie Quigley showed she too is up to the task of filling the basket as she tossed in 18 against Connecticut.

One thing the Sky can count on: The Lynx won't take them lightly even though Delle Donne is out. The Lynx learned a lesson on Sunday when they might have been looking past San Antonio.

The Stars, with the worst record in the league, took the Lynx down to the wire before losing. Seimone Augustus rescued the Lynx from an embarrassing loss.

Without Delle Donne in the lineup, Maya Moore, Augustus and Sylvia Fowles will be hard to stop.

The Lynx got the best of the Sky on July 5 when Moore outdueled Delle Donne. Moore connected on six 3-pointers and scored 33 points in an 87-82 win.

Delle Donne scored 38 in the loss.

On May 18, the Lynx beat the Sky 97-80. Fowles scored 24 points to lead Minnesota and Delle Donne had 28 in a losing effort.

SI Apps
We've Got Apps Too
Get expert analysis, unrivaled access, and the award-winning storytelling only SI can provide—from Peter King, Tom Verducci, Lee Jenkins, Andy Staples, Grant Wahl, and more—delivered straight to you, along with up-to-the-minute news and live scores.