Sky's Copper has 'approriate fear' of Mercury in Game 4 originally appeared on NBC Sports Chicago
Chicago Sky's Kahleah Copper put on an offensive show in Friday's Game 3 of the WNBA Finals against the Phoenix Mercury.
The guard led her team with a game-high 22 points, scoring 20 alone in the first half on 6-of-8 field goals. Her 20 points marked a tie for the second-most total points scored in a single playoff half by a Sky player. The Mercury's offense scored 24 points on 8-of-34 field goals in the first half.
Copper, who's now in her 5th season with the Sky, has never won a WNBA title since getting drafted in 2016 by the Washington Mystics. The Sky have also never won a WNBA title in franchise history. The team made its first WNBA Finals appearance in 2014 against the Mercury.
Seven years later, the Mercury still prove to be a tough opponent for the Sky, defeating Chicago in a heartbreaking 91-86 overtime loss in Wednesday's Game 2. But Copper's strong performance on Friday gave her and her team each a chance at winning their first WNBA title together in front of a sold-out home crowd Sunday in Game 4.
"I think we think about it, but we're just trying not to get too far ahead of ourselves," Copper said. "I think we have an appropriate fear because we know that Phoenix is a really good team. We're just trying to go in confident and not letting up. Still coming in and throwing the first punch and trying to really set the tone."
Copper said she never imagined playing in such a high-stakes game at a sold-out Wintrust Arena with celebrity fans like Chance the Rapper and Chicago Bears players Justin Fields and Roquan Smith in attendance. Chance the Rapper even sported the guard's No. 2 jersey.
"I really just appreciate the city just coming out and really supporting us and Chance the Rapper just really coming out and really giving us the energy," she said. "It means a lot."
Copper hopes for another strong offensive push early in Sunday's game to help her team relish the glory at home.
"For me, to win my first championship, I'm just excited," Copper said. "This is what I want. I just want to win. Nothing else matters. I think me winning a championship will speak for itself."