12:00 PM ET, June 21, 2011
The Atlanta Dream are off to a slow start and have struggled since losing Sancho Lyttle to her national team, but they are optimistic newcomer Courtney Paris can provide some help.The Dream will try again for their first home win of the season when they face the Chicago Sky on Tuesday.Lyttle started the first four games for the defending Eastern Conference champions, averaging 12.5 points and 7.8 rebounds, but she missed a home-and-home sweep by Minnesota this weekend and will remain out for the next four games while competing for Spain's national team in a qualifying tournament for the London Olympics.Without her, Atlanta (1-5) shot a season-worst 30.0 percent in Sunday's 77-64 home loss to the Lynx while getting outrebounded 51-38.The sweep by Minnesota came after the Dream picked up their first win of the season in a 79-58 victory at New York last Tuesday."We've got to bounce back in a hurry," coach Marynell Meadors said. "We've got to get some things worked out and put this game behind us."Angel McCoughtry will try to forget perhaps her worst performance of the season. McCoughtry, who averaged 21.3 points the previous three games, finished with 10 on 2-of-13 shooting Sunday, missing all three 3-point attempts.Despite the outcome, the Dream were pleased with the results from Paris, who was signed Saturday to provide an inside presence with Lyttle out. The 6-foot-4 center was drafted seventh overall by Sacramento in 2009, then taken fourth by Chicago in the dispersal draft after the Monarchs folded, but the Sky waived her before she played in a game for them.Paris had seven points and four rebounds in 14 minutes Sunday."Courtney Paris played outstanding for us," said Meadors, who added that it was possible Paris could keep her spot on the roster even after Lyttle returns. "She had 30 minutes to learn our system ... and she did a great job."The Dream still fell to 0-3 at Philips Arena. They lost all three home games against Chicago last season while winning the two road games.The Sky (3-2) are also trying to bounce back after their three-game winning streak was snapped by an 83-68 loss at Connecticut on Sunday.Chicago shot 39.7 percent and gave up its highest point total this season, allowing 48 in the first half."We didn't show some discipline on defense," coach Pokey Chatman said. "You can't do that against anyone in this league, let alone a well-coached team."Sylvia Fowles still had another impressive game, finishing with 23 points and 10 rebounds for her third double-double. She's scored at least 23 points in four straight games and is second in the league in scoring behind Phoenix's Diana Taurasi with 21.2 points per game.Fowles played well against the Dream last year, averaging 19.4 points in the season series.