The opening night of the WNBA Playoffs will conclude with the series-opener between the Phoenix Mercury and Las Vegas Aces. Of the four First Round series, this one is definitely expected to be the most lopsided. Current WNBA betting odds have named the Aces as a massive favorite to win the best-of-three series. Las Vegas is also laying double-digits ahead of Wednesday’s contest. Despite this, the majority of bettors are still opting to lay the points with the home team as their Mercury vs Aces Game 1 prediction.
The following game preview will get you all set for Wednesday night’s WNBA Playoffs Game 1 matchup. Included is our official Mercury vs Aces prediction, the injury report for both teams, WNBA betting odds, key betting trends and much more! But first, let’s take a look at this special welcome offer from BetOnline Sportsbook.
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Mercury vs Aces Prediction, WNBA Betting Odds and Game Info
WNBA Playoffs 2022 — Game 1
Phoenix Mercury (15-21, 4-14 Away) vs. Las Vegas Aces (26-10, 13-5 Home)
Date: Wednesday, August 17, 2022
Time: 10 PM EST
Venue: Michelob Ultra Arena — Paradise, NV
Mercury vs Aces WNBA Playoffs Game 1 Betting Preview
Phoenix Mercury Preview
To say that the 2022 WNBA betting season has been a roller coaster for the Mercury would be an understatement. All season long, Phoenix had to play in the shadow cast by Brittney Griner’s legal troubles overseas. Then, the Mercury parted ways with veteran center Tina Charles midway through the year. In the closing weeks of the regular season, Phoenix lost star point guard Diana Taurasi to a quadriceps injury that will likely keep her out for the duration of this Mercury vs Aces series. Making matters worse, leading scorer Skylar Diggins-Smith also remains out indefinitely due to a personal matter.
As the number of key absences mounted down the stretch, it was no surprise to see the Mercury drop five of their final seven games. Despite this, Phoenix still managed to secure the eighth and final spot into the WNBA Playoffs. A home win over Dallas in their penultimate regular season game proved to be the difference-maker in the final league standings. As for trying to compete against Las Vegas in this First Round series, the Merc will have their work cut out for them. Diamond DeShields, Sophie Cunningham and Shey Peddy project as the team’s top three offensive weapons so long as Taurasi and Diggins-Smith are sidelined.
Las Vegas Aces Preview
After finishing out the regular season with a flourish, the Aces managed to usurp Chicago for the No. 1 seed in the 2022 WNBA Playoffs. Las Vegas won each of its final four games down the stretch. The most prolific offensive team in the league all year long, the Aces fittingly secured the top seed by scoring 109 points in their season-finale against Seattle. Coach Becky Hammon’s club enters the postseason with a points per game average that sits four better than the next highest-scoring team. The Aces also boast an offensive rating that is nearly four points better than the next best team.
Because Las Vegas is so proficient offensively, it’s no wonder why many bettors have opted to lay the hefty Game 1 spread as their Mercury vs Aces prediction. Point guard Kelsey Plum led the team with 20.2 points per game this season. That mark was also good for the second-most of any player in the league. Fellow former No. 1 draft picks A’ja Wilson and Jackie Young weren’t far behind at 19.5 and 15.9 points per game, respectively. Meanwhile, Chelsea Gray averaged nearly 14 points and also led the team with over six assists per contest.
Mercury vs Aces WNBA Betting Odds
Moneyline: PHX: (+790) | LV: (-1300)
Point Spread: PHX: +14 (-105) | LV: -14 (-115)
Total: 168 — Over: (-110) | Under: (-110)
Public (Spread) Betting Percentages via VSiN: PHX: (29%) | LV: (71%)
Odds to win Series: PHX: (+1250) | LV: (-2500)
Mercury vs Aces Betting Trends
- Mercury are 0-6 ATS in their last six road games.
- Six of the Mercury’s last seven road games have stayed UNDER the total.
- Aces are just 3-9 ATS in their last 12 home games.
- Each of the Aces’ last five games against teams with a losing record has gone OVER the total.
- Ten of the last 11 Mercury vs Aces head-to-head matchups played in Las Vegas have gone OVER the total.
Phoenix Mercury Injury Report
Out: Skylar Diggins-Smith (personal) Diana Taurasi (quadriceps); Brittney Griner (personal); Kia Nurse (knee)
Las Vegas Aces Injury Report
Out: Dearica Hamby (knee)
Mercury vs Aces Stats
- Phoenix is averaging 81.1 points per game (PPG) this season (No. 7 in the WNBA).
- Phoenix is surrendering 84.1 PPG this season (T-No. 9 in the WNBA).
- Las Vegas is averaging 90.4 PPG this season (No. 1 in the WNBA).
- Las Vegas is surrendering 84.1 PPG this season (T-No. 9 in the WNBA).
Mercury vs Aces Prediction
By all accounts, the Mercury are in many ways fortunate to even have made the WNBA Playoffs. Not only must Phoenix now contend with the top seed in the very first round, but it is an awful matchup based on styles of play at that. Even back when the Mercury had the services of Diana Taurasi, Skylar Diggins-Smith and Tina Charles earlier in the season, the team struggled to defend. Phoenix has ranked at or near the bottom of the league in overall defensive rating all season long.
Oddly enough, the Mercury and Aces enter Wednesday’s WNBA betting matchup allowing the exact same points per game defensively. The difference between the two is that the Aces have outscored the 84.1 points they’ve allowed by over six points per game. The Mercury fell three full points short of that number offensively. Furthermore, Phoenix only surpassed the 80-point threshold once in their final seven regular-season games. In four of those contests, the Merc failed to even score 70 points.
Bettors must keep in mind that because the Aces play at such a fast pace, opponents are often able to score more than many expect when facing them. The injury absence of Dearica Hamby will arguably lead to an even greater emphasis on playing with tempo. Thus, despite the fact that Phoenix will be shorthanded, the expected game script and pace of play should produce plenty of possessions and scoring chances in both directions.
The Aces won each of three regular-season matchups against Phoenix by double figures. The fact that two of those games featured 194 and 180 total points scored would seem to suggest that the current WNBA betting odds have set this Game 1 total a bit too low.
Mercury vs Aces Prediction: Over 168 (-110 at BetOnline Sportsbook)