August 28, 2023: NY Liberty player introductions at Barclays Center prior to start of WNBA game vs. the Las Vegas Aces.
August 28, 2023: NY Liberty introductions at Barclays Center prior to game against Las Vegas Aces. Photo Credit: Brian Fleurantin

Listen: A Recap of the Liberty’s Four-Game Winning Streak and the Road Ahead On the ‘Gotta Get Up!’ Podcast

The WNBA playoffs are two weeks away, and the New York Liberty are on a roll. They have a stronghold on the second seed and have an outside chance of landing the top spot. At 28-7, they have established themselves as a contender—with room to improve.

The Liberty light it up

The Liberty have won four straight games, and three of those wins speak to how the team has grown. Against the Connecticut Sun, New York rallied from down 20 points to win in overtime. The team was led by the interior excellence of Jonquel Jones, who sparked the comeback with dominant post play.

As The Local W‘s Hamilton Neill recently wrote:

“[Jones] is healthy, coordinated with her teammates and comfortable playing within the system.”

Against the Minnesota Lynx on Saturday, the team scored a season-high 111 points en route to a commanding victory. Breanna Stewart was her usual MVP self as she scored 38 points in 26 minutes of work.

The Liberty defense deserves special mention as well. The team was flying around the court and made it nearly impossible for Minnesota to get clean shots on offense.

Defensive possession for the NY Liberty against the Minnesota Lynx

After the Lynx game, Sandy Brondello highlighted the team’s positioning and aggressive defense as keys to the victory. Players like Kayla Thornton and Jocelyn Willoughby were essential to the defensive effort as they maintained the energy from the starters and helped the Liberty lead grow. In August, the Liberty defense impressed as it held teams to 94.1 points per 100 possessions, the best in the WNBA.

Those wins led up to the main event on Monday night against the Las Vegas Aces at Barclays Center. Thanks to a team effort, the Liberty overcame a slow start and went on to a convincing victory 8n front of a record-setting home crowd. The win was a special moment for a Liberty franchise that is continuing to climb out of its dark years.

The game was a rousing success off the court as well.

As we recently wrote in a feature story, with the changing nature of TV, having games where everyone can access them matters more than ever. 

After the game, general manager Jonathan Kolb spoke with the press and discussed a variety of topics. In our conversation with him, he made sure to acknowledge the pride the team has in representing New York City and thanked the fans for being loyal with the team over the years. At the same time, he noted the journey is not complete and the team still has room to improve to reach its ultimate goal.

Gotta Get Up!

On this week’s edition of Gotta Get Up!, Erica Ayala and I discussed:

  • The final Liberty vs. Aces regular season matchup
  • How the Liberty were able to excel even with Jonquel Jones in foul trouble
  • How the play of Stefanie Dolson and Kayla Thornton gives the Liberty another dimension
  • Marine Johannes!
  • How the Liberty defense was able to bother the Aces
  • Whether the Aces are starting to run out of gas
  • A quick tour around the WNBA
  • A preview of the Aces and Liberty’s schedule to end the regular season

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