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    Friday, June 21, 2024

    Connecticut Sun vs. Phoenix Mercury preview capsule

    Phoenix Mercury guard Diana Taurasi (3) during a WNBA basketball game, Tuesday, May 14, 2024, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/Ian Maule)

    Location: Mohegan Sun Arena

    Tip: 7 p.m. (NBC Sports Boston)

    Probable starters: Mercury, 6-1 G-F Kahleah Copper (29.2 ppg, 4.0 rpg, 2.4 apg), 6-0 G Diana Taurasi (19.0 ppg, 4.8 rpg, 1.4 apg), 5-10 G Natasha Cloud (11.0 ppg, 5.2 rpg, 8.8 apg), 6-2 F-G Bec Allen (5.8 ppg), 6-3 F Natasha Mack (4.2 ppg, 7.2 rpg, 3.6 apg).

    Sun, 5-10 G Ty Harris (11.8 ppg, 2.8 apg), 5-11 G DiJonai Carrington (15.0 ppg, 4.8 rpg, 1.4 apg), 6-4 G DeWanna Bonner (20.6 ppg, 5.2 rpg, 1.8 apg, 2.2 spg), 6-2 F Alyssa Thomas (15.4 ppg, 9.6 rpg, 7.8 apg), 6-3 F Brionna Jones (11.6 ppg, 5.2 rpg, 2.2 spg).

    Noteworthy: The Sun raised their record to 5-0 Saturday with an 86-82 victory at Chicago, despite the ejection of All-Star forward Thomas with 3:41 remaining in the third quarter. Connecticut outscored Chicago 27-24 for the remainder of the game. “I think it was our execution. I think we locked in,” Connecticut’s Jones said of what led to the victory in the tough moment. “We knew what we wanted to do, what shots we wanted to get, we knocked ’em down. The experience we’ve had, we’ve been in some close ones. We have the experience. We’re a veteran team. That kind of pushed us over the edge.” Bonner led the Sun in scoring for the fourth time this season with 19 point, eight rebounds, three assists and one block. She scored 14 of her 19 points in the second half. ... Phoenix (3-2) is off to a fresh start this season. After going 9-31 a year ago, the Mercury hired former NBA assistant Nate Tibbetts as their head coach and also brought in Cloud, a free agent who won a WNBA title with the Washington Mystics; and Copper, a three-time All-Star with the Chicago Sky who is currently second in the league in scoring. The 41-year-old Taurasi, meanwhile, the former UConn great and five-time Olympic gold medalist, has had six or more 3-point field goals in a game twice this season, shooting 40.4% from 3-point range. Allen came to Phoenix after starting 27 games during the regular season last year with the Sun. The Mercury, coming off a 107-92 loss Saturday to Dallas, are currently without All-Star Brittney Griner, out with a fractured toe.

    — Vickie Fulkerson

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