Published: Thu, September 13, 2018
Sport | By Wendy Sparks

Seahawks react to Seattle Storm's third WNBA championship

Seahawks react to Seattle Storm's third WNBA championship

It's the first WNBA championship for Stewart, who scored 30 points in a 98-82 victory over the Washington Mystics in Game 3 of the best-of-five series.

Stewart and Bird have had each had a remarkable year, culminating in a magical end to the season that's been years in the making for their franchise. Now, after his 17 season as a WNBA coach, he finally has his first title.

"Just the fact that she is so versatile", Stewart said. A young Seattle team that lost in the first round the past two years and won just 15 games last season, obliterated Washington for its first crown since 2010.

"I think Natasha Howard is the biggest difference between [the Storm] last year and this year on the court".

"I posted on the board for my team in training camp one of the preseason predictions that was put out there", Thibault recollected. "And our team took a look at that and said, 'Hell no'".

Howard was right behind her, dropping a double-double 29 points and 14 rebounds in the win, shooting 11-of-14 from the field.

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The Storm outscored the Mystics 26-14 in the second to extend its lead to 46-30 heading into halftime.

Both teams rely heavily on the 3-point shot.

In the third, starting center LaToya Sanders made a heroic dive to save a ball heading out of bounds, allowing Toliver to scoop it up and score. In hopes of lighting a fire under his team, head coach Mike Thibault verbally assaulted an official before heading to the locker room for intermission, which earned him a technical foul.

"Way at the beginning, I said at the start, I was exhausted of losing", Stewart said.

Seattle swept the best-of-five series, 3-0. However, she was scoreless in the fourth quarter.

"We understand that the difference here is we have a chance to win a championship and not just advance to the next round", Bird said. I'm a very left-footed player.

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Stewart said the first time she got to sleep after winning the title Wednesday night was on the plane ride home. "And to do it with this group, the way we did it, I don't even know how to react to be honest".

The Storm got their first taste of life without Bird in the semifinals when she broke her nose and had to sit out the remainder of Game 4 against Phoenix.

The post-game locker room scene was a brief moment. "I'm going to need a lot tonight". "They are going to play that way offensively, they're going to play that way defensively". "Not now. We know they're going home and they'll feel good about being at home in front of their fans". Bird said. "That's when I knew it was over".

Seattle coach Dan Hughe praised the Mystics in his opening statement to reporters.

The answer came almost four months later with a championship.

"I mean, it was different", Delle Donne acknowledged. The championship trophy has eluded the Mystics for their 21 seasons of existence. "This is a great arena, could be electric in here if we fill it up".

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