Indiana Fever vs. Phoenix Mercury: How to watch the WNBA on CBS Sports Network

There are three games on the WNBA schedule on Friday night, including a matchup between the Indiana Fever and Phoenix Mercury.

Though they got off to a much better start than everyone expected, the Fever have started to come back down to earth. They've lost two in a row and four of their last five to fall to 5-7 on the season. But despite not getting the wins in this stretch, they've been competitive in each game, losing three of them by six points or less. 

As for the Mercury, they've been one of the more disappointing teams this season. Though they finally got a win in their last outing, they're just 3-5, and would be out of the playoffs if the season ended today. The good news is that Diana Taurasi should be back in the lineup soon, though she isn't expected to play Friday night. 

How to watch Indiana Fever at Phoenix Mercury

Storylines

Fever: No one was ever convinced that the Fever were actually one of the best teams in the league when they got off to a hot start, especially considering most of those wins came over the Wings and Liberty, two of the worst teams in the league. So it's not much of a surprise that they've started to falter lately, losing two in a row and four of their last five. The best sign for the Fever, though, is they've remained competitive, and shown some real improvement from the last few seasons when they failed to even crack double digits in the win column. They can really score the ball and have some fun young players in Erica Wheeler, Tiffany Mitchell, Kelsey Mitchell and Teaira McCowan. 

Mercury: After falling just short of a trip to the Finals last season, everyone expected the Mercury to be among the contenders yet again. Instead, they're currently in ninth place in the league with a 3-5 record, and have been pitiful on the defensive side of the ball. Even without Diana Taurasi, they should have gotten off to a better start considering they still have two other stars in Brittney Griner and DeWanna Bonner, and plenty of veteran depth. The silver lining for the Mercury is that not only will Taurasi be back soon, but the rest of the field hasn't exactly distinguished themselves either, and they're still just two games out of a top-four seed. They have time to turn things around, and would do well to start with a win over the Fever. 

Game prediction, pick

The Mercury haven't exactly inspired confidence this season, but this is a game they should absolutely win based on the talent difference between the two teams. Even if the Fever end up keeping this close, as they've done with most of their games this season, the Mercury should still find a way to get the win. 

Pick: Mercury 77, Fever 71 

NBA Writer

Jack Maloney lives and writes in Milwaukee, where, like the Bucks, he is trying to own the future. Full Bio

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