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WNBA Restart Opening Day Odds and Picks – July 25th

Sabrina Ionescu shooting a free throw in practice
No. 1 overall pick Sabrina Ionescu makes her debut as part of the WNBA kickoff on July 25. Photo from @nypost (Twitter).
  • Three teams favored to win the WNBA title kick off season in  Florida
  • No. 1 overall pick Sabrina Ionescu makes much anticipated WNBA debut
  • See the odds, our analysis and best bets for opening day for the WNBA below

It’s a great way to kick off the WNBA season.

The defending champion Washington Mystics, Seattle Storm and Los Angeles Sparks — a three-way betting favorite in the 2020 WNBA Championship odds — are showcasing in each of today’s three games.

And if that’s not enough, we’re also getting a glimpse into the future, with superstar-in-waiting Sabrina Ionescu making her much anticipated debut with the new-look New York Liberty.

WNBA Opening Day Odds (July 25)

Team Spread at DraftKings Moneyline Over/Under Game Time (Eastern)
Seattle Storm -9.5 (-112) -480 Over 154.5 (+104) 12pm
New York Liberty +9.5 (-112) +340 Under 154.5 (-129)
Team Spread at DraftKings Moneyline Over/Under Game Time (Eastern)
Los Angeles Sparks -3 (-113) -155 Over 154 (-112) 3pm
Phoenix Mercury +3 (-112) +123 Under 154 (-112)
Team Spread at DraftKings Moneyline Over/Under Game Time (Eastern)
Indiana Fever +2.5 (-112) +115 Over164.5 (-113) 5pm
Washington Mystics -2.5 (-113) -113 Under 164.5 (-112)

Odds taken July 24. 

Let’s take a look at all three games, and find you the best bets to make in this shortened 22-game sprint at the IMG Academy “Wubble” in Florida.

Seattle Storm vs New York Liberty

Consider it the ultimate reset, spearheaded by the ultimate prize building block.

The New York Liberty’s rebuilding project is on, thanks to drafting Sabrina Ionescu first overall in the 2020 WNBA Draft — one of seven rookies featured on the Liberty roster this year.

The stud guard filled stat sheets like water in her senior year at Oregon, putting up 17.5 points, 9.1 assists, 8.6 rebounds and 1.5 steals, while efficiently operating on 51.8% shooting from the field and a crisp 39.2% from deep.

She’s the most decorated college player to come in the W, recording an NCAA-record 26 triple doubles, while becoming the first player in to amass a career 2,000 points, 1,000 rebounds and 1,000 assists ever.

What a welcome to the league — having to face the Seattle Storm.

Back for Seattle is Breanna Stewart, the 2018 Finals MVP who was out with an Achilles’ injury, along with ageless wonder Sue Bird, who missed 2018 with a knee injury. Plug them into a roster that features 2019 DPOY Natasha Howard, Alysha Clark, and the backcourt of Jordin Canada and Mercedes Russell and that roster looks nice.

Seattle wins, but Ionescu shows her star power from Day 1, and keeps it close.

The pick: Liberty +9.5 (-112)

Los Angeles Sparks vs Phoenix Mercury

For LA, getting swept by the Connecticut Sun and denied a trip to the WNBA Finals was rough, as it included star forward Candace Parker getting benched by head coach Derek Fisher.

How they move forward is key, because Parker is part of a three-headed beast with Nneka Ogwumike and Chelsea Gray that will try to carry a squad that will miss key contributors in Chiney Ogwumike and Kristi Toliver for health reasons.

The Mercury will feature MVP candidate Brittney Griner, a runner-up last year to Elena Delle Donne (more on her below). She averaged 20.7 points and 7.2 rebounds a game.

Here’s hoping for great health for legend Diana Taurasi, who played just six games last year while battling back and hamstring injuries and new addition Skylar Diggins-Smith can be a third star.

In 2018, she averaged 17.9 points and a career-best 6.2 assists. Bria Hartley adds a whole other dimension of speed and playmaking Phoenix desperately needs.

While Griner is the best player on the floor, Parker may be on an early season revenge tip. It’s enough to push LA to a win.

The pick: Sparks ML (-155)

Indiana Fever vs Washington Mystics

After winning their first-ever WNBA title a year ago, the Washington Mystics are in disarray.

League MVP Della Donne (19.5 points, 8.2 rebounds per game on 51.5% shooting from the field and 43.0% from three) was denied a medical exemption for this season from the league for Lyme disease. It was an ailment she’d been dealing with for years, and made it public after the WNBA deemed she was healthy to play.

And while Washington is keeping the door open for her to return, head coach Mike Thibault said the team was operating like Della Donne was not playing this season.

The bad vibes from this are just a piece of the problem. Their championship-caliber roster has been stripped of key pieces, starting with an offseason trade of Kristi Tolliver. Two players: Natasha Cloud (work on social justice reform) and LaToya Sanders (health concerns) are already out, and a third, Tina Charles, is hoping for a medical exemption as well.

Emma Meesseman will need to move from a starring role on the bench into premier option as a starter. We’ll also see if Ariel Atkins and Aerial Powers can level up, and if Leilani Mitchell can fill the void at point.

As for Indiana, they’re trying to break an ugly postseason drought that’s now three years deep. Perhaps third overall pick Lauren Cox — one of the few stars that didn’t end up drafted by the Liberty — can help turn fortunes.

She averaged 12.5 points and 8.4 rebounds with Baylor in her senior season. She’ll be paired in the frontcourt with Teaira McCowan, who finished her rookie campaign a year ago at 10 points and nine rebounds per contest.

It’s a nice start, and a backcourt rotation featuring Kelsey Mitchell, Erica Wheeler and Tiffany Mitchell is promising, but not enough to go against the champs. Or even what’s left of them.

The pick: Mystics -2.5 (-113)

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