Phoenix Mercury vs Washington Mystics – July 23, 2023
PHOENIX MERCURY VS WASHINGTON MYSTICS EXPERT PICK – JULY 23, 2023 – Greetings basketball fans. Welcome back to our weekend WNBA coverage here at Godzilla Wins. We have two games on tap for Sunday. The early game is the Phoenix Mercury (6-15) taking on the Washington Mystics (11-10).
In a battle between two ball clubs vying for a playoff spot, here is a look at which team has the edge heading into this matchup.
When: Sunday, July 23, 2023 at 1:00 PM ET
Where: St. Elizabeth’s East Entertainment and Sports Arena, Washington, D.C.
Odds Courtesy of DraftKings as of July 23, 2023. Table provided by editorial staff.
Phoenix Mercury vs Washington Mystics – Season Trends
Phoenix Mercury Stock Trending Upward Following Woeful 3-14 Start
To say that the Mercury have struggled this season would be an understatement. Thanks to multiple losing streaks of at least three games, Phoenix produced just three wins through its first 17 games. Despite the awful start, the Mercury have been playing well as of late, posting three wins in their last four outings.
This includes a pair of wins over the Connecticut Sun (72-66) – a team that has the third-best record in the league — and the Chicago Sky (80-62).
Although the Mercury are trending in a positive direction, they don’t make the grade in several areas. For example, they are ranked last in scoring (76.7 PPG) and they have the fourth-worst efficiency rating.
At the other end of the court, Phoenix is ranked eighth in points allowed (83.8 PPG) and they have the worst defensive rating in the association, giving up 107.6 points per 100 possessions. Furthermore, Phoenix is the worst rebounding team in the league (30.7) and the team leads the league in turnovers per game (15.9). That said, it is not much of a surprise that this is the first time the team has won consecutive games all season.
Washington Mystics Hoping to Snap Recent Two-Game Skid
The Mystics produced nine wins across their first 14 games, but have cooled down considerably. They have won just twice over their last seven games. Washington was defeated by the Indiana Fever 82-76 and followed that up with a 96-87 loss to the New York Liberty on Friday. Brittney Sykes paced the Mystics with 29 points, 10 rebounds, and three assists. Natasha Cloud contributed 17 points, four rebounds, five assists, and two steals in a losing effort.
The Mystics are hoping to get back into the win column as they trail the Indiana Fever by a half-game for the No. 5 spot in the playoff race.
The Mystics are 4.5-point favorites. While neither team has been overly great against the spread — Phoenix (8-13) and Washington (10-11) — here is why I am picking the home team to cover.
- Phoenix is 2-5 ATS in its last seven games that were played on Sunday.
- The Mercury are 8-20-1 ATS in their last 29 road contests.
- Phoenix is 2-7 ATS in their last nine games against teams with a winning record. The Mystics are 11-10 on the season.
- Washington is an impressive 6-1 ATS in their last seven home games.
- The Mystics are 5-1 ATS in the last six games following an SU loss.
Prediction: Washington Mystics (-4.5)
The projected over/under total for this contest is 157.5. Here are a few trends that suggest why going with the OVER is the smart bet.
- The OVER total has prevailed three times in Phoenix’s last five games in which they played on two days of rest.
- The OVER is 15-5-1 for the Mercury in the last 21 games they played against teams with a winning record.
- In Washington’s last six games following an ATS loss, the OVER holds a 4-1-1 record.
- The OVER is 4-1 for the Mystics in their last five home games.
- The OVER total has prevailed 12 times (12-3-1) in the last 16 games Washington has played against teams with a losing record. The Mercury are 6-15 on the season.
- The last 11 times these teams have gone head-to-head in Washington, the OVER total has cashed in seven times (7-3-1).
Prediction: Over 157.5 points
Player Prop Bet
There was no player prop bet available at the time of this writing, but my key player to watch in this contest is Phoenix Mercury Center, Brittney Griner. Here’s why:
- Griner is averaging 18.7 points per contest. This marks the sixth consecutive season in which she has averaged at least 17 points per game.
- Griner has eclipsed the 18-point threshold six times across her last 10 outings.
With that in mind, if the projected scoring total is between 18 – 18.5 points or less, go with the OVER.
Conversely, if the projected scoring total falls outside of that range, go with the UNDER.
Prediction: Brittney Griner OVER 18 points
- Washington Mystics (-4.5)
- OVER 157.5 points
- Brittney Griner OVER 18 points