WNBA BPI: Upcoming game vs. Sparks could determine Mystics' playoff road

ByRiley Foreman ESPN logo
Monday, August 14, 2017

At 16-10 and sitting in fourth place in the league, Washington is currently in position to earn at least a first-round bye after missing the playoffs entirely last season.

However, the Mystics still have games remaining against each of the top-three teams in the league, beginning with the Sparks on Wednesday (ESPN2, 7 p.m. ET). Washington will also face the Liberty and Mercury, both of whom are above .500 and within 2 1/2 games of the final bye.

The Mystics are 5-8 against the Western Conference this season and trail the Sparks by 2 1/2 games for the second double-bye. ESPN's WNBA Basketball Power Index gives Washington a 14 percent chance of receiving a double-bye, which would rise to 24 percent with a win.

Volatile Storm in race for eighth

According to WNBA BPI, the Storm currently own the best offense in the Western Conference, predicted to contribute 1.5 points per game more than the average WNBA team. However, Seattle's defense is undermining the work of the offense, which is negatively affecting their scoring margin by a predicted 4.7 points per game (11th in the league).

Sunday, the Storm face the Sky, who currently own the tiebreaker for the final playoff berth. The meeting marks the first of two remaining games between the Sky and Storm, and BPI gives the Sky a 31 percent chance to win both. Although these teams have identical 11-16 records, BPI indicates that Chicago is a more balanced team. On a neutral court, BPI predicts that the Sky would beat the Storm by 3.9 points.

For more analytics content, visit www.espn.com/analytics.