CHICAGO — From a number of new players to the departure of their coach and general manager mid-season, there have been a lot of complications for the Chicago Sky in 2023.
But their scenario to clinch a spot in the WNBA Playoffs is not.
Thanks to the Sparks’ loss to the Liberty on Thursday, all the Sky need to do is get one more victory in their final two games to clinch the eighth seed in the postseason. That’s because the Sky own the season tiebreaker against Los Angeles, having beaten them in three of their four match-ups.
Interim head coach Emre Vatansever’s team will face the Lynx at Wintrust Arena on Friday night and then the Sun on Sunday on the road. One win in either game will punch the Sky’s ticket to the postseason, but if they lose both, they’d still make it if the Sparks lose to the Storm in Seattle on Sunday.
If that happens, the Sky will extend their franchise-long playoff streak to five seasons, having made it from 2019-2022. They would face the No. 1 seed in the three-game opening round, which will either be the Las Vegas Aces, who currently sit in first, or the Liberty.
Making the postseason would be a positive for a group that has endured plenty of change this season. With a flip of the roster through free agent departures and trades in the offseason, head coach and general manager James Wade left to be an assistant for the Toronto Raptors in July.
Kahleah Copper has continued her strong play with another All-Star selection as she’s averaged 18.6 points per contest in 37 games as the Sky’s primary offensive option. Marina Mabrey, the centerpiece of a major trade in the offseason, is averaging 14.9 points per game while Courtney Williams has provided veteran leadership while also dishing out six assists per contest.
They’ll need all their efforts to keep their postseason streak going, but at least the scenario is easy after a complicated season.