Welcome to Brooklyn…. Friday night at the Barclays Center the New York Liberty kicked off the first game of the 2023 WNBA playoffs against the Washington Mystics. In front of an electric atmosphere, as fans were bringing the good energy all night long in the team’s 90-75 victory.
There were a ton of legends in the building including Sue Wicks, Sue Bird and Teresa Weatherspoon got to sit in the front row and supported the team.
During the First Quarter of the game things weren’t clicking for the Liberty. The intensity from the players caused both teams to get into foul trouble early. Eventually though New York got into the groove and thanks to their play got the fans Rocking.
Fans are encouraged to check out the following photo gallery from The First Round of the 2023 WNBA Playoffs between the Liberty and Mystics…..photos by: Stacy Podelski/1495Sports
Fans are also encouraged to check out the following videos:
A pre-game look from the 2023 WNBA Playoffs First Round between the New York Liberty and the Washington Mystics:
Thoughts from Head Coach Sandy Brondello along with Betnijah Laney and Sabrina Ionescu from after the game…video is compliments of the New York Liberty:
Laney set the tone for New York, as she scored a career high 19 points on 53.3% (8-15) shooting from the field, to go along with a playoff career-high eight rebounds. Both Laney and Jonquel Jones were the reason in the First Half the Liberty were able to score some points.
JJ impressed with her style of play as she was able to record her 11th double-double of the season with 12 rebounds, 20 points shooting from the floor at 58.3% (7-12).
Sabrina Ionescu found her groove in the Second Half of the game, as she scored six of her seven three-point shots in the second half. Ionescu scored 29 points and showed a ton of heart and passion throughout the night. In the fourth quarter she dropped back-to-back to back 3-point shots and helped to end the game on a strong note with a bucket with 22.3 seconds left with the final three pointer.
“I was just kind of in that zone locked in, the basket felt pretty big when I was shooting and obviously to win this game at home is huge for this crowd and what they meant for us all season long. Also, tonight they (the fans) were rowdy, electric and continue to give us the motivation that we needed. We want to continue to play our best possible when we are playing at home,” said Sabrina after the game.
The Liberty came out hungry and wanted to defend the Barclays after the tough regular season loss to the Mystics. That is one of the more memorable moments as the Mystics took home the win with the final shot with .5 seconds left in the game.
Hitting the game winner in that moment is Brittney Sykes. Slim finished the game with 16 points in the First Round of the playoffs and impressed with her defensive style of play.
During the pre-game press conference Skyes talked about growing in the Metropolitan Area, going from attending the games and now playing Liberty in the playoffs.
There was a bit of a Milestone Moment for the Liberty, as with her assist at the 4:35 mark of the second, Courtney Vandersloot recorded her 300th career postseason assist, joining Lindsay Whalen and Sue Bird. At 41 games, she is the fastest player to reach the milestone in WNBA history. She ultimately finished with seven points, a team-high six assists, four rebounds, and two steals.
Sloot is so swift on the court if you lose sight of her for one second, she is going to drive the ball straight to the hoop.
Also having an impressive showing for the Liberty is Breanna Stewart as she rounded out the scoring with her 10 points, eight rebounds, four assists, and three blocks
Up next for the New York Liberty is going to be the all-important Game Two, taking place on Tuesday, September 19, 2023, at the Barclays Center with the Tip Off Time set for 7:00 p.m. With a potential victory the New York Liberty can advance to the Second Round of the 2023 WNBA Playoffs.
For more information on the New York Liberty fans are encouraged to check out the link seen below.
For more information on the Washington Mystics fans are encouraged to check out the link below.
Homepage – Washington Mystics (wnba.com)