ESPN Tips off WNBA Postseason with First Round Doubleheader Tonight


ESPN Tips off WNBA Postseason with First Round Doubleheader Tonight

2018 Regular Season Earns 35% Audience Increase Over Last Year, Most-Viewed on ESPN2 Since 2014

ESPN’s live presentation of every game of the 2018 WNBA Playoffs will begin tonight, Tuesday, Aug. 21, with a first-round, single-elimination doubleheader on ESPN2. Skylar Diggins-Smith and the Dallas Wings will visit Diana Taurasi and the Phoenix Mercury at 8:30 p.m. ET, followed by the defending WNBA Champions Minnesota Lynx and Maya Moore visiting last season’s runner-ups Los Angeles Sparks and Candace Parker at 10:30 p.m. Commentator Pam Ward, analyst Kara Lawson and reporter LaChina Robinson will call the early game, with play-by-play commentator Ryan Ruocco, analyst Rebecca Lobo and reporter Holly Rowe calling the second tilt.

The semifinals will tip-off Sunday, Aug. 26, with No. 1-seeds Atlanta Dream and Seattle Storm facing off against the winners of Thursday’s games. Every game of this year’s postseason will air on the ESPN networks. Additional highlights:

  • Coaches will be mic’d up during the first and second rounds and semifinals of the Playoffs, while coaches and select players will be mic’d up during The Finals.
  • The 2018 WNBA Draft Lottery will air at halftime during ESPN2’s Playoffs coverage on Tuesday, Aug. 28. The Draft Lottery will be hosted by Kevin Connors from ESPN’s Bristol, Conn., headquarters.

Also, will supplement ESPN’s production with comprehensive live coverage and analysis throughout the WNBA postseason by Mechelle Voepel.

2018 WNBA Regular Season Viewership Grows

The action-packed 2018 WNBA season saw a 35% viewership increase over last year (231,000 vs. 171,000), and it was the most-viewed season on ESPN2 since 2014. The Western Conference battle between the Los Angeles Sparks and the Seattle Storm on June 28, garnered an audience of 382,000, making it the most-watched regular-season game on ESPN2 since 2013. This year’s regular-season schedule on ESPN2 featured at least one previous WNBA MVP in every game, and 11 games showcased at least one former No. 1-overall pick.


Date Time (ET) Game / Commentators Network
Tue, Aug 21 8:30 p.m. First Round:
Dallas Wings at Phoenix Mercury
Pam Ward, Kara Lawson, LaChina Robinson
  10:30 p.m. First Round:
Minnesota Lynx at Los Angeles Sparks
Ryan Ruocco, Rebecca Lobo, Holly Rowe
Thu, Aug 23 6:30 p.m. Second Round:
TBD at Washington Mystics
  8:30 p.m. Second Round:
TBD at Connecticut Sun
Sun, Aug 26 3 p.m. Semifinals, Game 1:
TBD at Atlanta Dream
  5 p.m. Semifinals, Game 2:
TBD at Seattle Storm
Tue, Aug 28 8 p.m. Semifinals, Game 2:
TBD at Atlanta Dream
  10 p.m. Semifinals, Game 2:
TBD at Seattle Storm
Fri, Aug 31 TBD Semifinals, Game 3
Atlanta Dream at TBD
  TBD Semifinals, Game 3
Seattle Storm at TBD
Sun, Sep 2 TBD Semifinals, Game 4* ESPN2
  TBD Semifinals, Game 4* ESPN2
Tue, Sep 4 TBD Semifinals, Game 5* ESPN2
  TBD Semifinals, Game 5* ESPNEWS

* If necessary

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Tara Chozet

I handle PR for ESPN Radio, espnW, technology, remote operations and soccer. I received my undergraduate degree from Dartmouth College and my Master’s degree from the University of Southern California Annenberg School for Communication & Journalism.
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