Sykes a bright spot for Dream in loss to Wings

By Jameelah Johnson

By With multiple storylines heading into the season opener for the Dream - a new coach in Nicki Collen, the return of Angel McCoughtry and the additions of Monique Billings and Renee Montgomery - it could be easy to overlook the sophomore year for Brittney Sykes.

With McCoughtry sitting out the 2017 season, the Dream slowly incorporated Sykes into the offense with her eventually becoming one of the top scorers as a starter. She averaged 13.4 points in the 2017 season, scoring 17.8 points per game in the final 10 contest. 

In the season opener for Atlanta against Dallas, Sykes came off the bench and immediately began making things happen. On offense, she was even more aggressive with cuts and drives to the basket. Sykes finished with 14 points on 4 for 11 shooting and she also made 6 of 9 free throws.

 (Kathy Willens | Associated Press)

(Kathy Willens | Associated Press)

On defense, she had the energy and will but along with the rest of Atlanta, looked just a step behind in the matchup against the Wings. Dallas shot 31 of 64 from the field, scoring all but 18 of its 101 points from inside the paint or the free throw line. Liz Cambage made it difficult for Atlanta's bigs to stop or keep up with her, causing the wings to help on defense and commit fouls. 

It is only the first game of the season, so conclusions are difficult to make but observations are plentiful. The loss in Dallas will still be fresh and Atlanta will have to make adjustments to come out strong against the Sky on Wednesday.