MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Basketball season tips off Sunday night in downtown Minneapolis. The Minnesota Lynx are back in action with their home opener at Target Center against the Washington Mystics.

Center Sylvia Fowles says the home opener is always a special day in sports.

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“Very excited. My fans are great, I think we have the best fans in the league, and I’m just ready to go out there and showcase what we got,” said Fowles.

“It’s always fun playing here at home with my family here, you know, local fans that I love. It’s always a special place to play at the Target Center, our fans are amazing, so we’re gonna be really excited and we need to play well for them,” said guard Rachel Banham.

Homegrown-favorite Banham has transitioned to a new role this season, handling the starting point guard duties in game one. She worked on that position exclusively over the course of training camp.

“I think for the most part I’ve done a good job. I think I still have like more steps to take, I have another level to my leadership, and I’m gonna really try to focus on that today in tonight’s game,” said Banham.

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(credit: CBS)

Maybe the biggest Lynx storyline over the course of the year will be WNBA great Fowles and her farewell season.

“Actually I cried the last game in Seattle. I didn’t think that I was gonna get emotional. But right now it’s just a lot of excitement, a lot of build up just to see like where we can go this year,” said Fowles

She is just one point away from 6,000 career points. But defense will be the key Sunday night against a tough Mystics team. And Minnesota is still without some of their best players for various reasons.

“I think we’re going to be pretty danggone good. I have a lot of expectations for this team, and not only because it’s my last year but just because we have a lot of talent and I’m hoping that everybody can step up to the plate,” she said.

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Washington’s top threat, former MVP Elena Delle Donne, will not play Sunday night because it’s her scheduled rest day. First tip is scheduled for 7 p.m.

Ren Clayton