The Phoenix Mercury have a new motto for the season: "We're fed up." Diana Taurasi, while speaking of her recovering back injury and the team's current slump, repeated the words "we're fed up" as she energetically left this morning's shootaround. She said "the sun's still going to come up," spoke of the importance of coming out and giving the same effort for every game, but then went on to say that the team needs to translate that into wins at some point or another.
Hopefully that happens sooner rather than later.
Diana Taurasi Injury Update
"It's feeling alright ... [in regards to being held out of game vs. ATL] I tried to warm up and give it a go, but sometimes, to go out there and not be able to be full strength hurts your team."
Taurasi seemed much more animated and lively today, and expects to play in tonight's game against the Washington Mystics.
Although the mood at shootaround was lighthearted and casual, there is no doubt that the team will be remembering the 85-75 defeat they suffered at the hands of Washington just last week. However, if the team expects to pull off a victory, some things need to change.
- Limit Crystal Langhorne and Lindsey Harding. In the last game, Langhorne went for 31 points (13-of-18 shooting) and Harding went for 24 points (9-of-12 shooting), and both got to the charity stripe six times.
- Stay out of foul trouble. When Taurasi went down in the fourth quarter with a back injury, the team turned to Penny Taylor and Candace Dupree. However, both players were in foul trouble and the team was unable to overcome the Mystics.
- Play like it's the playoffs. The Mercury are a long shot from missing the playoffs, but if the team can't turn around its recent struggles, a playoff berth may be just that: a berth. The more talented the team the better, but if a team is firing on all cylinders by the time the playoffs start, anything can happen.
All in all, expect this to be a good game. Coming into this game, the two teams have opposite records and seem to be heading in opposite directions. Phoenix sits at third place in the Western Conference at 5-10 and is slumping, while Washington also sits at third place in the East at 10-5 and is starting to click. Look for the Mercury to be coming out for redemption, not only in the eyes of the media and their fans, but for themselves.