The New York Liberty have won a WNBA playoff match for the first time since 2015 after defeating the Chicago Sky in Game 1 of their first-round encounter.
The defending champion Chicago Sky and the New York Liberty squared off in the opening game of the first round of the WNBA playoffs on Wednesday.
The Sky appeared to be in a position to win the crucial Game 1 victory with little over three minutes left, leading 91-85. They would only need one more victory to go past the opening round if they took this action. Instead, the Liberty scored 13 points in a row to win 98-91. This massive upset stunned both fans and the media on Twitter.
Twitter flooded with a bunch of memes and tweets after Liberty’s breathtaking victory over Sky
Heck of a way to kick off the #WNBAPlayoffs with the 7th-seed New York Liberty stealing a big Game 1 win on the road against the 2nd-seed Chicago Sky. NY now has a 1-0 series lead and is one game away from advancing.
Welcome back, #WNBA Playoffs. What a way to start things off.
— Mitchell Hansen (@M_Hansen13) August 18, 2022
The Liberty trailed 91-85 with 3:31 remaining in Game 1 against the Sky before going on 13-0 run, tied for the 3rd-largest to end a playoff game in WNBA history.
New York won the game 98-91, setting a new franchise record for points in a playoff game. pic.twitter.com/wbacBVb5XH
— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) August 18, 2022
Chicago Sky were stunned after this. From this moment on NY goes on a 13-0 run, Chicago didn’t score again. Unbelievable. https://t.co/L7OoDHovU8
— Rachel Galligan (@RachGall) August 18, 2022
— Jas (@JasTayler) August 18, 2022
Sabrina Ionescu and the NY Liberty walked into Candace Parker's house and put their feet on the couch??? pic.twitter.com/0ws6qmdX6T
— Varnel Trill ?—? OFFLINE! (@MillyBeamen) August 18, 2022
The Liberty’s most recent victory came on September 23, 2015, when they defeated the Indiana Fever 84-67 in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals. In order to win the season and secure a place in the WNBA Finals, the Fever would need to win the following two games.
It was a strong play that marked the start of the Liberty’s comeback. Marine Johannes received the ball from Sabrina Ionescu and flicked it all the way to the three-point line. When Natasha Howard was left alone in the paint, Johannes gave her a double-handed, over-the-head throw. Howard made an open layup to reduce their deficit to 91-87.
Speaking about Ionescu, in more than 30 minutes of play, she led New York with 22 points on 8-for-12 with seven rebounds, six assists, and two steals. For the Sky, Candace Parker scored 17 points and 10 rebounds, and Courtney Vandersloot both had a double-double of 13 points and 10 assists. Chicago’s Kahleah Copper was the top scorer with 22 points (7-for-14 on field goal attempts). If the Liberty wins Game 2 on Saturday, they will have a chance to advance to the Conference Finals.