Lynx take advantage of Sparks’ cold shooting

LOS ANGELES – The Los Angeles Sparks returned home to Crypto.com Arena after a three-game road trip. From how they played against the Minnesota Lynx, the Sparks played like they were still fighting off the remnants of jet lag. 

As a team, the Sparks played a step behind and slower than the Lynx all night and could not find any rhythm against the visitors. The first quarter was a good indicator of things to come as the Sparks could only muster 12 points. 

Meanwhile, Minnesota looked fresh and showed it to the home team with a 27-point blitz in the first period. That theme would carry over to the next two quarters before the Sparks finally decided to show up for the game. 

Dearica Hamby led the Los Angeles Sparks with 17 points against the Minnesota Lynx in an 86-62 defeat at Crypto.com Arena on June 5, 2024. Photo credit: Dennis J. Freeman/News4usonline

LA cut a once 28-point deficit in the third quarter to 12 points in the final period and trying to make a game of it. Minnesota then pumped the brakes on the Spark’s mini-rally and came away with an eventual 86-62 win, handing Los Angeles its third straight defeat. 

The Sparks are now 2-7 on the season with home games against the Dallas Wings and Las Vegas Aces soon before they are on the road again. There are a couple of takeaways from this game that can spell out why the Sparks lost so decisively to Minnesota. 

The first one is that the Sparks only had one player score in double figures for the game. Dearica Hamby scored 17 points to lead the Sparks in scoring. Hamby didn’t get much from anyone else. Overall, it was a bad shooting night for the Sparks or super great defense by the Lynx. 

It was a combination of both. The Sparks made 20 of 77 field goals they attempted. That equates to 26 percent. Their 3-point shooting was even more on the hideous side of things. The Sparks made just 4 of 28 shots from beyond the arc, a miserable 14 percent. It was a tough night for the Sparks. 

It was especially rough sailing for center Cameron Brink. 

Cameron Brink and the Los Angeles Sparks could not get untracked against the Minnesota Lynx in an 86-62 defeat at Crypto.com Arena on June 5, 2024. Photo credit: Dennis J. Freeman/News4usonline

The day began wonderfully for Brink. USA Basketball announced that the No. 4 overall pick in the 2024 WNBA Draft was selected to be part of the women’s 3×3 team that will represent the United States at the Olympics in Paris. 

Brink got into foul trouble early and was never a factor in this game. Brink played 16 minutes, shot 1 of 5 from the field, and scored two points. Brink spent more time sitting on the bench than the time she spent on the court. With Brink going in and out of the lineup, the offensive fluidity of the Sparks was upended into a version of unpredictability. 

As for the rest of the team, nobody on the Sparks, outside of Hamby, did anything to change the dynamics of the contest. The one thing the Sparks did better than Minnesota this night was rebound the basketball. Los Angeles outrebounded the Lynx, 44-37. Not that it mattered. 

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