ATLANTA - This was the first WNBA Finals for Seimone Augustus. And the Lynx guard acquitted herself well, scoring 22, 36 and 16 points as her team swept Atlanta.
Her 16 points in the deciding Game 3 Friday matched her regular-season average. So someone asked the Finals MVP in the postgame news conference if she was surprised she scored so many points in this series.
"No! No! No way. This is what I do," Augustus said. "This year we have had an amazing team. I haven't had to score as many points as many years before. And I was able to get my teammates involved."
Augustus, taken by the Lynx with the first overall pick in the 2006 draft, credited the Lynx organization for putting this championship team together.
"They did a great job of bring in coach [Cheryl] Reeve, and they made a great decision with the draft picks, we got Maya [Moore], we got Amber [Harris]. Candice Wiggins hung around with us. Charde [Houston] hung around. We got Rebekkah [Brunson]. Taj [McWilliams-Franklin] came in, in free agency, it's a masterpiece. It came together well."
Coming home The Lynx will return to Minneapolis at 4:30 p.m. Saturday on Delta flight 744. A parade for the team down Nicollet Mall will be at 11:30 a.m. Tuesday. A rally at Target Center will follow at 12:15 p.m.
Start of a dynasty? Looking at the Lynx roster, a fan of the team has to be excited. Except for McWilliams-Franklin, who turns 41 later this month, all of the players should have several productive years left or, in rookie Maya Moore's case, a decade at least.
McWilliams-Franklin could retire at the end of this season, but she keeps deciding every year to come back. And coach Cheryl Reeve said her center could play until she is 50.
So could the Lynx win a handful of titles this decade? It's too early for such speculation, Reeve said.
"Every year is different; in the WNBA, we very much live in the moment," said Reeve, an assistant coach with Detroit when the Shock was league champion in 2006 and '08. "None of us are thinking about next year or the year after that. But our roster is set up to be pretty good for at least a few years."
Reeve: Referees were fair Atlanta coach Marynell Meadors and two of her players, Angel McCoughtry and Sancho Lyttle, came close to openly criticizing the officials in Game 2. So far, no fine from the league.
The three officials called 56 personal fouls, which meant the game lasted nearly 2 1/2 hours, about 30 minutes longer than a normal game.
Reeve said she was OK with Wednesday's crew, a different group that worked Friday's Game 3.
"They always rotate [crews]," Reeve said. "Of the fouls that were called, there are always going to be ones you can question. But 95 percent of the calls were correct calls.
"I would put [all the fouls] on the players, both sides. The officiating crews take a lot of heat. But if you watch the video closely, I can see what they saw."
The Lynx were 38-for-46 at the free throw line, both finals records; the Dream shot 21-for-32.
About the draft The Lynx, despite their high finish, will have one of the top four picks in the 2012 WNBA draft. A lottery, usually held in the late fall, will determine if they get the No. 1 pick again.
Don't bet against the Lynx in lotteries. Augustus, in 2006 and Moore in 2011, were the first overall picks.
The top pick the Lynx have in 2012 is actually Washington's pick; they obtained it when they traded Nicky Anosike to the Mystics.