My Seattle Storm played in a huge game last night against the Los Angeles Sparks and it was a glorious day for the Storm coming up with the big win. It's been a couple of weeks since I watched the Storm play and I think they've definitely cleaned some things up. I especially like the way they've improved defensively, much tougher and more physical.

Offensively, there were some nice plays that I liked. This 3 play sequence comes from a critical 3rd quarter run which the Storm used to gain some separation between themselves and the Sparks and the eventual win. A couple of nice 3-pointers by Sue Bird, and Lauren Jackson and finally a sweet PNR stack play to cap it off,

Pick-n-Roll Stack Quick Hitter:

I love this quick hitter. It's all about the reads and great point-guard play. Sue Bird was really on yesterday, making her shots and finding her teammates. The play sets up like your typical PNR between Sue and LJ, the other 3 players stack up on the weak-side,

Sue comes off the ball-screen by LJ, simultaneously, the bottom player from the stack comes up while the middle player in the stack heads for the opposite low block. The top player in the stack sets a downscreen. LJ pops out after the screen looking for a pass from Sue for the 3-pointer,

Basically, there are 4 options from this play,

1. Sue can shoot the mid-range shot if the defense plays the ball-screen underneath and recover is late
2. Pass to Tanisha Wright coming off the upscreen for the mid-range shot
3. Pass to Swin Cash flashing to the low-block (wide open in the clip)
4. Pass to LJ on the pick and pop


Huge win for the Storm who are now 14-7 on the season, the Sparks fall to 12-8. I could see the frustration in the face of Candace Parker, LJ played her straight up all night and did a fantastic job. She even did double-duty guarding Lisa Leslie as well.

For some more quick hitters on offense, take a look at Brenda Frese's DVD on Dynamic Quick Hitters. Coach Frese is the head coach of the Women's basketball team at University of Maryland. Discuss this and the rest of your favorite basketball topics at the X's and O's Basketball Forum.