WNBA Odds, Picks, Previews & Predictions: Best Bets for Tuesday’s Slate, Featuring Wings vs. Sky (August 2)
Photo by Cooper Neill/NBAE via Getty Images. Pictured: Arike Ogunbowale (Wings)
- The end of the WNBA regular season is only two weeks away, so that means things are really heating up.
- The league has four games on its slate on Tuesday, and we have our best ways to approach each matchup from a betting perspective.
- Read our previews, picks and leans below.
There are only two weeks left in the WNBA regular season, but it’s a jam-packed 13 days, with teams like the Liberty and Wings squeezing in as many as seven games during that stretch. That leaves no rest for these teams, who hope to make it to the postseason.
The standings also provide no respite, as they are just as tight — if not tighter — than when we last checked in. A mere two games now separate sixth and 11th, with (obviously) six teams crammed in that tiny gap, and plenty of matchups between this half dozen firing each night.
Let’s do a real quick best and worst of the remaining schedules out there.
Easiest Road (and also: talk about controlling your own destiny)
The New York Liberty still sit in the dream spot for a fan: one game out of the postseason, but also in a tie for the second spot in the draft lottery.
And they will undoubtedly have a say in which direction they go.
As noted above, they have seven games left, and all seven (!) come against teams in that glut of franchises battling for playoff spots 6-to-8. They don’t have to face a single Big Five side, but they also get no freebie against Indiana.
As we’ve been saying for a while: Liberty fans are basically getting an extra month of free playoff basketball with this playoff push.
The moral equivalent of that scene in Jackass where they have to crawl across the room with a hundred rat traps and tasers lining the floor
Ok, honestly, it’s not that bad for Chicago Sky, I just thought of that scene and wanted to use the reference. But the top seed will undoubtedly be tested if they want to hold onto that spot.
Their next four games are at home, but all four are against teams in a playoff spot right now, with three against a fellow Big Five team. They then complete their Big Five BINGO card with a trip out to Las Vegas that very well may be the decider for who gets the top seed in this postseason.
Finally, the Sky end the season in Phoenix against a Mercury team that very likely will have something to play for.
And speaking of teams with a lot to play for, we are onto Tuesday’s action.
Article plays: 45-34-2 (16.9% ROI)
Action Network app plays: 100-79-2 (7.8% ROI)
WNBA Odds, Picks
Click on game to skip ahead
|Mercury vs. Sun||7 p.m. ET|
|Sparks vs. Liberty||7 p.m. ET|
|Aces vs. Mystics||7 p.m. ET|
|Wings vs. Sky||9 p.m. ET|
Mercury vs. Sun
|Moneyline||+460 / -650|
|Time||7 p.m. ET|
|Odds via Caesars. Get up-to-the-minute WNBA odds here.|
It’s mostly long-term injuries/issues for these two teams. For Phoenix, it’s Brittney Griner, Kia Nurse and Diamond DeShields. For Connecticut, it’s Jasmine Thomas and Bria Hartley.
Be Cautious Here
On paper, this looks like a perfect spot for the Sun. As has been mentioned in these previews, this team is getting a bit overlooked given how much some of the advanced metrics love their season-long performance.
Also, they matchup perfectly with the Mercury.
The Sun pound the glass, and the Mercury are incredibly vulnerable there, especially after the departure of Tina Charles.
Connecticut has one of the best 3-point defenses in the league, while Phoenix is one of the most chuck-friendly teams, even when failing to hit those deep shots at a high percentage.
But I’m a little nervous about this line. For one, a double-digit line is no joke, especially when the dog is 4-3 straight up in the past three weeks.
There’s also the fact that Jonquel Jones has not quite looked like herself since coming back from the health and safety protocols, averaging just 9.3 points and 4.3 rebounds in her three games back. She is the Sun’s biggest weapon on the offensive glass, but hasn’t looked like that same threat of late.
The Mercury are also very good in the fourth quarter — which I wouldn’t put tons of stock into for a quarter bet or anything like that, but it does mean that a backdoor cover is very much a possibility.
Connecticut also isn’t going to be able to turnover the veteran backcourt of Phoenix nearly as much as it would like to in order to feed their excellent fast-break game.
I do think the Sun can punish Phoenix from pretty much every level of the court, though, so I’m leaning toward the Sun. However, I wanted to lay out the reasons I’m not making it a full pick.
Lean: Connecticut -10
Sparks vs. Liberty
|Moneyline||+132 / -165|
|Time||7 p.m. ET|
|Odds via BetRivers. Get up-to-the-minute WNBA odds here.|
These two teams have been battling for the title of injury report champs this season, but by now, even these two are mostly healthy.
For New York, Betnijah Laney does still remain out, while Kristi Toliver is the only definite to be missing for L.A. on Tuesday. Lexie Brown is listed as questionable again for the Sparks.
Fastbreak Points vs. 3-Pointers
These two teams matchup in pretty fascinating ways with each other. Both teams are extreme when it comes to their strengths and weaknesses, and these pluses and minuses will all be spotlighted Tuesday.
For the Sparks, they are one of the best teams in the W at both forcing turnovers and getting points off those turnovers, especially on the fastbreak.
As any Liberty fan knows, that spells danger for New York. The Liberty aren’t handing over the ball quite as egregiously as they were to start the season, but even with recent improvements, they give the ball away more than most of the league.
Also, those turnovers are often live-ball turnovers, hence their hefty opponent fastbreak points even in their wins.
Edge: Los Angeles.
However, as any Sparks fan knows, the team is not without plenty of flaws of its own. Maybe most notably: it gets killed from beyond the arc. The 38% clip at which the Sparks allow their opponents to hit from deep is worst in the league, with only Phoenix even in the same area code.
The Liberty are not shy from deep, with no team in the W launching more from 3-point range than New York this season. And even though they are just 3-7 in their last 10, no team in the W has shot a better percentage from deep in their past 10 games than the Liberty.
For the season as a whole, they are fourth-best from deep.
Edge: New York
It’s not quite as simple as 3>2, but with an incredibly flaccid trio of outings from the Sparks since Liz Cambage left the team (such high hopes dashed), as well as the fact that the Liberty have been much better at home and the Sparks have struggled on the road, it’s a New York lean for me.
I also like the potential for New York going just catatonic from deep against this terrible Sparks defense, and therefore, I am going to look for an alt line on the Liberty blowout. (It’s not out yet, but I’ll put it in the app.)
Pick: New York -3.5
Lean: Over 161
Aces vs. Mystics
|Moneyline||-160 / +135|
|Time||7 p.m. ET|
|Odds via Caesars. Get up-to-the-minute WNBA odds here.|
Two clean injury reports here! The only player to even keep an eye on is, of course, Elena Delle Donne.
How Will EDD Look After Her First Back-To-Back?
I know Washington is more than just Delle Donne, so I apologize for making her so central in what feels like every Washington preview. But the fact remains that it’s pretty rare to have a player who makes this big of an impact on her team’s bottom line and is this questionable on a game-to-game basis.
The latest word out of Washington is positive, with EDD having played back-to-back days for the first time all season over the weekend. And she came out of it feeling good!
This is great news for the W, and even better news for the Mystics, who, to be blunt, aren’t a title contender if EDD isn’t an every night player. If she is, there’s a lot to like here.
That being said, I really like fading her and Washington on Tuesday. Sunday felt a lot like a big win for Washington.
The Mystics earned the split with their likely first-round opponent, Seattle, after dropping the opener on Saturday. And of course, they had their star survive her first back-to-back in years.
However, they have to play the team with the fastest pace in the league, a team that is going to show no mercy running EDD and the Mystics up-and-down the court.
Las Vegas is back to looking like arguably the best team in the league after that strange fallow period in the middle of the season. The Aces are 7-1 since the break, with a net rating (16.6) nearly twice as strong as any other team in the league during that time period.
Side note: I still think this team has fade potential late in the postseason because the Aces’ issue, in hindsight, is clearly what we thought it was at the time of their struggles: they were tired because they lack depth.
Of course, they also haven’t done anything to add any real depth to the team in the time since. The playoffs are going to grind them down, and I’ll likely be looking to fade them late in the postseason should they get there.
But back to this game, I likely will be playing Delle Donne player prop unders — in addition to this Vegas spread.
Pick: Las Vegas -3 (play to -4.5)
Wings vs. Sky
|Moneyline||+245 / -310|
|Time||9 p.m. ET|
|Odds via PointsBet. Get up-to-the-minute WNBA odds here.|
The big name here is Candace Parker. The all-timer missed the Sky’s most recent game with a non-Covid illness and is listed as questionable for Tuesday.
Arike Ogunbowale is a big name popping up on the Dallas injury report, but she is listed as probable with an ankle injury that didn’t stop her from playing 36 minutes her last time out. Satou Sabally remains out for the Wings, however.
Continue Hitting the Over
Technically, blindly betting the over just dropped below positive ROI during the last WNBA gameday, but it has still been far more profitable than the under on the season as a whole.
We’re going back to that well with this matchup.
The Wings are 17-12 to the over this season (11.1% ROI), with Chicago coming in at 17-14 to the over (4.2% ROI). Both teams are trending even more in that direction, with overs returning 25.8% for Dallas in July and 11.1% for Chicago.
As the weather heated up, so did these two offenses.
There are good matchup signs for an over as well: Chicago struggles to limit second-chance points (a key strength for Dallas), while the Wings defend the paint poorly (Chicago is elite there offensively).
The only thing to keep an eye on is Ogunbowale. I would bet this number right now regardless, but cash out if she is ruled out, as she is essential to the Dallas offense. As noted above, though, she is probable to play — just keep an eye out.
Pick: Over 167 (up to 170.5)