Seattle, WA – The Seattle Storm cruised to an 81-68 victory over the Los Angeles Sparks in their first game back in Climate Pledge Arena. Formerly known as Key Arena, the Storm welcomed themselves back home with a resounding win over the retooled Sparks behind big performances from Breanna Stewart and Jewell Loyd. The Storm were able to hold every Los Angeles starter, except for Brittney Sykes, under double digits.
The Storm jumped out to a hot start early, resulting in a 19-point lead at the half. Shooting guard Jewell Loyd, who signed a two-year deal in the offseason to stay with the Storm, was on fire with 15 points in the first quarter. Loyd, nicknamed the Gold Mamba, will play a huge role in this team’s success and very well could be the reason that they’re a title contender. Another huge reason for the Storm’s contention, forward Breanna Stewart, lead the game in scoring with 20 points on the night. The Loyd and Stewart one-two punch is deadly, and if they can stay on top of their game all season, Seattle has a great chance of sending out Sue Bird with one final championship.
In a crowded league, and on a crowded roster, rookie guard Raina Perez made an impact on the game off the bench. Perez had nine points off the bench, while adding two steals and three rebounds. The guard position is already a crowded one considering that Sue Bird, Jewell Loyd, Briann January, and Epiphany Prince all are seemingly locked in to the lineup. With that being said, Perez could battle her way on to the roster spot for a Storm team that is gearing up to try and give legendary point guard Sue Bird her fifth and final title.
Seattle plays one more preseason game before the regular season gets underway, and that takes place on April 28th on the road against the Phoenix Mercury. That game is a 7PM PST tip off at the Footprint Center, as the Storm take on a Mercury team that lost in last years Finals and may also be looking to send legendary point guard Diana Taurasi out with a title soon