Expectations were high for the Lynx as they opened the 2012 season. The team returned all five starters from their 2011 championship season, including four all-stars. Those expectations were matched through the early part of the season, as the team set the WNBA record with 10 consecutive wins to start the season, before losing to Seattle on June 17. The team then won two consecutive games to run their record to 12-1.
July proved to be a difficult month. The team lost three straight to start the month, and lost forwards Devereaux Peters and Rebekkah Brunson to injuries. The team signed guard Julie Wojta, who had been drafted by the team but cut after training camp, to a 7-day contract to provide depth. The Lynx rebounded by winning back-to-back games over the Tulsa Shock, and went into the Summer Olympic Break with a 15-4 record.
Three members of the Lynx—Seimone Augustus, Maya Moore, and Lindsay Whalen—were members of the United States women's national basketball team for the 2012 Summer Olympics. The three players were the most contributed by any WNBA squad. The team won gold during the games, the second medal for Augustus, and the first each for Moore and Whalen.
Seimone Augustus missed two games in June with a strained quadriceps muscle. Jessica Adair underwent arthroscopic surgery on her knee on June 21. Devereaux Peters and Rebekkah Brunson both went out with injuries in July.
The Lynx returned to action on August 17, 2012, beating the Washington Mystics 98-69. They won their second game back, beating Tulsa 83-59 to clinch a berth in the playoffs. It was the earliest in a season the Lynx had ever clinched a playoff spot.
The Lynx did not lose until September 11, when they fell to the Chicago Sky. By that point, the Lynx were comfortably ahead in the Western Conference standings; the team ultimately won the top overall seed in the playoffs, and matched a franchise record with 27 wins.