Breanna Stewart, Storm: Stewart earned her first All-WNBA First Team honor and first WNBA MVP award after ranking second in the league in scoring (21.8 ppg), third in rebounding (8.4 rpg), seventh in blocked shots (1.44 bpg), eighth in steals (1.35 spg), 10 in field goal percentage (52.9) and eighth in three-point field goal percentage (41.5) for league-leading Seattle.
The three-time WNBL All-Star with the Perth Lynx is now a WNBA champion after making her American league debut for the Storm at age 28 last season.
The Storm rolled to a 16-point lead after the first half behind dominant performances from Stewart and center Natasha Howard.
It was also reported that Mystics star Elena Delle Donne was a guest on the next episode of LeBron's HBO show 'The Shop.' They combined for 59 points and 22 rebounds, helping the Storm establish a big lead and coast to a 98-82 win. The three-point play sparked Seattle to pull away.
Both teams rely heavily on the 3-point shot.
"I think that series, looking back on Phoenix, it's something that we really learned from", Stewart said. "It was how we countered that when things got close".
Stewart said the first time she got to sleep after winning the title Wednesday night was on the plane ride home.
Tierra Ruffin-Pratt sank a three-pointer with 6:49 left to cut Seattle's 16-point lead to five (72-67).
"You're only going to impact [Delle Donne and Toliver] to a degree", Hughes said.
"Our team went through a rebuild, and yes, I chose to stay, and once we got Jewell and Stewie, we knew we would get on the other side, but how do you know you're going to get on the other side this fast". Rookie Ariel Atkins has been a steady offensive force for the Mystics, averaging 19 points per game in the series, but they will need a lot more from the remaining starting five.
The players, meanwhile, saved what they had to say for Thursday's season-ending exit meeting.
It didn't dim their view of how well 2018 went up until the final round.
Howard was a deep reserve for Minnesota during the Lynx's title run previous year, averaging 1.1 points and 0.9 points. "Not now. We know they're going home and they'll feel good about being at home in front of their fans. Now I can go to the bar, order her everything she needs".
"This is probably going to be one of the defining moments of my career to have played however many years I've been playing, to have won in all these places, but then to do it at the end in such a way that was different from all the others, it's really incredible". Bird said. "That's when I knew it was over".