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Sports Betting Expert
The Phoenix Mercury will head across the country to square off with the Connecticut Sun on Tuesday night in the first of a two-game set. Tip off is slated for 7 p.m. ET from the Mohegan Sun Arena. Coverage will be nationally televised on NBA TV.
The Mercury were routed by the host New York Liberty 89-69 in their last outing. Sophie Cunningham was tops for the Mercury with 21 points along with two blocks. Shey Peddy (13 points, 12 rebounds) and Skylar Diggins-Smith (13 points, 11 assists, two blocks) both tallied double-doubles for the Mercury.
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The Sun were edged by the visiting Chicago Sky 95-92 in overtime on Saturday to snap a four-game winning streak. The Sky used a 9-0 run in overtime to seal the victory, capped with Allie Quiqley’s basket with 8.1 remaining. DeWanna Bonner paced the Sun with 23 points, nine rebounds, and two steals. Alyssa Thomas registered 22 points, eight assists, and five steals.
The Mercury (13-17) have the fourth-best record in the Western Conference out of six teams. The Mercury is 9-5 at home and 4-12 on the road. The Mercury ranked No. 8 in the WNBA in point differential (-2.4).
The Sun (20-10) have the second-best record in the Eastern Conference. They’re three games back of the Sky. The Sun is both 10-5 at home and on the road. The Sun are behind only the Las Vegas Aces with a point differential of +6.6.
The Mercury have five players averaging double digits in points, led by six-time WNBA All-Star Diggins-Smith (20.0). Diggins-Smith ranks third in the WNBA in points per game while also leading the Mercury in assists (5.8). Diggins-Smith is second on the Mercury in steals (1.6).
Future Basketball Hall of Fame member Diana Taurasi is second on the Mercury in points (17.3) and assists (4.0). Taurasi has spent her entire career with the Mercury since 2004 and has captured three WNBA titles, two Finals MVPs and 14 All-WNBA selections (10 First Team, four Second Team).
The Mercury is fifth in the league in points per game (82.9), seventh in field goal percentage (43.3), and last in three-point percentage (32.6). Defensively, the Mercury is third in fast break points (8.8), fourth in points off turnovers (14.6), and 10th in defensive rating (104.4).
The Sun have five players averaging double digits in points, led by reigning WNBA MVP Jonquel Jones (14.5) who is shooting 49.3 percent from the floor and 34.4 percent from the 3-point line. Jones is fourth in the WNBA with 8.5 rebounds per game. Thomas tallies 13.5 points per game and is third in steals (1.7) and fifth in assists (6.1) respectively in the WNBA.
The high-powered Sun offense is second in the league in field goal percentage (46.0) and three-point percentage (35.4) while being third in points per game (85.1). Defensively, the Sun is first in steals (9.0), second in fastbreak points (8.3), and third in defensive rating (97.1).
The Sun is favored by 10.5 points against the Mercury. The over/under is set for 167.5 points. The Sun should cover the spread and easily handle the Mercury in the first game of the set.
Written by Rolando Rosa, our US sports betting industry expert.