(1) Lynx vs. (6) Washington
Preview: The Lynx swept the season series 3-0, but add an asterisk. Washington star and former MVP Elena Delle Donne missed one of those games and didn't play much in another, while center Emma Meesseman missed two of the games. The Lynx won five of their past six regular-season games, including the past three to clinch the top playoff seed. Washington ended the regular season 2-6 but beat both Dallas and New York in the playoffs. It won in New York on Sunday against a Liberty team carrying a 10-game winning streak. The Lynx are looking to reach the WNBA Finals for the sixth time in seven seasons and are seeking their fourth title in that stretch. Delle Donne finished fourth in the league in scoring (21.5 ppg), and Mystics coach Mike Thibault is the all-time leader in regular-season victories (270). With Lindsay Whalen as his point guard, Thibault coached Connecticut into the WNBA Finals in 2004 and 2005.
Regular-season records: Lynx 27-7, Mystics 18-16
Players to watch: Lynx C Sylvia Fowles averaged a double-double this season (18.9 points, 10.4 rebounds) and was fifth in the league in scoring, second in rebounding and blocks (2.0) and 12th in steals (1.3). She averaged 15.6 points and 11.3 rebounds vs. Washington. F Maya Moore averaged 21.6 points and shot nearly 60 percent from three-point range vs. the Mystics. F Rebekkah Brunson averaged 12.6 points and 5.6 rebounds vs. Washington. Mystics G Kristi Toliver, part of the Los Angeles team that beat the Lynx in five games in last season's finals, was an offseason addition. She set the WNBA playoff record with nine three-pointers in Sunday's victory over New York, scoring 32 points. Meesseman has averaged 10.5 points and 7.8 rebounds in two playoff wins.
Numbers: This is the first time the two teams have met in the playoffs. Minnesota has six players with more playoff experience than Washington's leader, Toliver (25 games). Leading that list are Brunson and Whalen, with 73 games each. Brunson is looking to become the first WNBA player with five titles. Minnesota became just the second team in league history to have a scoring differential of 10 or more in a season (plus-11.1).
Injuries: The Lynx report no injuries. Mystics guard Tayler Hill, a Minnesota native, suffered a season-ending knee injury in July.
Tuesday: at Lynx, 7 pm (ESPN2)
Thursday: at Lynx, 7 pm (ESPN2)
Sunday: at Washington, 2 pm (ESPN)
Sept. 19: at Washington, TBA (ESPN2)
Sept. 21: at Lynx, TBA (ESPN2)