Atlanta Dream open 2024 campaign with 92-81 win over Los Angeles Sparks

Atlanta Dream open 2024 campaign with 92-81 win over Los Angeles Sparks  

By: Tori Newman, Atlanta Dream Communications Assistant  


ATLANTA, Ga. — The Atlanta Dream opened its 2024 season victorious, led by veteran Tina Charles and Rhyne Howard as they defeated the Los Angeles Sparks in a back-and-forth game that featured seven different ties.  

With the win, Atlanta also broke a 20-20 overall series ties with the Sparks. In her third season at the helm of the Atlanta Dream, head coach Tanisha Wright elected to utilize a starting lineup of Haley Jones, Rhyne Howard, Allisha Gray, Cheyenne Parker-Tyus and Tina Charles. 

Charles made her debut for the Dream with a double-double, finishing with 21 points and 14 rebounds. The center signed to the Dream as a free agent this past February. 

Howard led Atlanta’s scorers with 25 points and three rebounds. Howard, Charles, Gray and Jones all finished scoring in double figures.  

The Dream began its season opener down 9-2 but fought back to end the first quarter with a 26-26 tie.  

Charles helped Atlanta to shake off its start and overcome the Los Angeles lead throughout the first half. She powered the Dream to a 7-0 run against the Sparks in the second quarter, being the singular outlet for the Dream offense for almost five minutes. The veteran center combined with Howard to score 18 of the Dream’s 22 second quarter points.  

Ending at 48-48, the first half featured three lead changes with the game being tied five different times.  

The Dream and Sparks continued to go back-and-forth in the third, ending with yet another tie at 66 even.  

Atlanta broke the fourth quarter open with an 11-point unanswered run to start, led by Howard who scored five consecutive points. The Dream held the Sparks scoreless for four minutes, featuring blocks by Howard, Dangerfield and Aerial Powers.  


Howard furthered the Dream’s fourth quarter onslaught, knocking down another 3-pointer to give Atlanta an 80-70 double-digit lead with just under five minutes to play.  


The Sparks fought to bring the game within seven, but it wasn’t enough to overcome Howard and Atlanta’s fourth quarter performance.  


The Dream will travel to Phoenix next to take on the Mercury on May 18. The game will tip-off at 10:00 p.m. EST and stream on both Peachtree Sports Network and NBA TV.