The Chicago Sky have clinched the second and final spot in next month's WNBA Commissioner's Cup, where they will take on the WNBA-best Las Vegas Aces.
The Sky secured their berth as the Eastern Conference representative with the Connecticut Sun's loss to the Washington Mystics Sunday afternoon. earned its spot out of the Western Conference thanks to a 92-84 win over Dallas Wednesday.
The Sky are now 8-1 in Commissioner's Cup play following Sunday's 89-87 loss to the Fever. The Aces are 8-0 in Cup play.
"It's tough after you drop one like tonight," Sky guard Courtney Vandersloot said. "This was a big one where we could've stayed undefeated. We're talking hosting, those type of things, and those were the things that we were trying to strive for, and we let one get away tonight. But we are still clinched and we're looking forward to that. But we've got to get a lot better if we want to compete in that game."
In its second year, the Commissioner's Cup is an in-season competition featuring 60 regular-season games: the first home game and first road contest each team plays against its conference rivals. The teams with the best winning percentage in each conference face off in the championship, which this year will be held on July 26 at the home arena of the squad with the highest win clip in Cup play.
In the cup's inaugural iteration last season, the Seattle Storm defeated the Connecticut Sun 79-57 at a neutral site, Phoenix. The championship game offers a $500,000 prize pool for players, with the winning team able to earn at least $30,000 per player and the runners-up able to take home $10,000 each.
This year, the competition also features a charitable component in which the league will donate at least $165,000 to local nonprofits in all 12 team markets.