Phoenix Mercury guard Diana Taurasi recognizes that the 48 hours leading into Game 1 of the WNBA Finals were a roller coaster of emotion, as the WNBA legend helped knock out the Aces before flying home to see the birth of her daughter.
“Yeah, it’s been a pretty eventful last two days,” Taurasi said. “What we got done in Vegas was no easy feat. That was a very difficult game that we found ourselves winning and then obviously flying home and getting the best win ever, a healthy daughter and a healthy wife.”
Still, the WNBA GOAT isn’t citing fatigue as a reason for the Mercury’s Game 1 loss. Instead, she’s focused on what comes next, including trying to upend a really good Chicago Sky team. While the Mercury started Sunday’s game well, the Sky soon took over and never looked back.
“They just took it to a different level,” Taurasi said. “That had nothing to do with us being tired. If you followed them for the last month, they were just playing at a different level.
“We know that wasn’t our best effort tonight. All the credit goes to Chicago. They put us in situations that we just didn’t react well to.”
Still, Taurasi knows that both the team and herself can play better basketball. That means relying on past playoff experience and focusing on some of the more technical elements of the game.
“I was pretty pathetic with the basketball today,” she said. “For playing so much basketball, that was pretty pathetic and that’s on me. We can’t turn the ball over like that, especially not in the Finals. That’s just me being a bad basketball player. We’ll adjust some things, and hopefully we’ll be in better positions to get out of those traps on the court.”
Still, the team is confident in their abilities to reset.
“We’ll be able to fight another day,” Brittney Griner said, pointing to the fact that it was just one game in a five-game series.
“We’re going to just keep gutting it out,” Taurasi continued. “And that’s what this team has been all year, gutty. We’re going to be grimy and gutsy.”