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Thiel: 'Didn't Seem There Was Ever A Doubt' For Storm's Third WNBA Title

Carolyn Kaster
AP Photo
Seattle Storm guard Sue Bird, left, holds the championship trophy with her teammates during after winning Game 3 of the WNBA basketball finals, Wednesday, Sept. 18 2018, in Fairfax, Va. Seattle Storm won 98-82.

Seattle Storm fans will gather at Seattle Center this Sunday to honor the team. They won their third WNBA title this week, defeating the Washington Mystics in a three-game sweep.

KNKX sports commentator Art Thiel tells host Kirsten Kendrick that the Storm was the team to beat all season. And they had a not-so-secret weapon.

Bird Most Impressive

Thiel said he is impressed that the Storm have won three titles but he's most impressed with the performance of veteran point guard Sue Bird.

"The most amazing stat that was part of this whole thing is that Sue was playing with her fifth broken nose," he said. "It just demonstrated what a warrior she is."

"She's been the broken face of this franchise," Thiel joked. "It's hard to play with a broken nose. And the fact that she prevailed epitomized , I think, the success of this franchise and certainly this season."

Third Title No Surprise

"They were 'the goods' from the beginning," Thiel continued.

"They finished the season with a 26-8 record, which was the No. 1 seed. They did it with, I thought, a very contemporary, state-of-the-art offense, where you're talking about the bigs going outside and shooting three-pointers."

"There's just no defense for that. The (Washington) Mystics had no shot (in the finals) with that kind of ruthless offensive efficiency of the Storm."

"That was a brilliant execution of a very contemporary philosophy. It's a tribute to Dan Hughes, their first-year coach that he adapted this style to the people who could execute it."

"They were so smooth and so ruthless that there was just no doubt (in Game 3) who was going to win."

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Kirsten Kendrick hosts Morning Edition on KNKX and the sports interview series "Going Deep," talking with folks tied to sports in our region about what drives them — as professionals and people.
Art Thiel is a co-founder and writer for the rising sports website Sportspress Northwest. In 2003 Thiel wrote the definitive book about the Seattle Mariners, “Out of Left Field,” which became a regional bestseller. In 2009, along with Steve Rudman and KJR 950 afternoon host Mike Gastineau, Thiel authored “The Great Book of Seattle Sports Lists,” a cross between and Mad Magazine that has become mandatory reading for any sports fan who has an indoor bathroom.