Late Taurasi three spoils Lynx season opener
Diana Taurasi made a go-ahead 3-pointer with 1.1 seconds left to give the Phoenix Mercury a 77-75 victory over the Minnesota Lynx on Friday night.
The 38-year-old Taurasi made just two of her first 12 field goals before hitting the winner in the opener for both teams.
The officials stopped play after Taurasi’s basket because the clock inadvertently stopped at 6.8 seconds when Minnesota turned it over. Following a lengthy delay, the Lynx inbounded it at half court but were not able to get off a shot before the buzzer.
Skylar Diggins-Smith led Phoenix with 18 points. Brittney Griner had 17 points and 12 rebounds for her 42nd career double-double, tying former Mercury star DeWanna Bonner for the most in franchise history.
Brianna Turner added 13 points and 10 rebounds, Taurasi finished with 14 points and Kia Nurse, in her first game with Phoenix, had 10.
Griner tipped in her own miss just before the halftime buzzer to give Phoenix a 33-24 lead. She had 10 points, nine rebounds and three blocks in the first half, and Diggins-Smith added eight points as the Mercury led by as many as 11. Kayla McBride led Minnesota with nine points.
Minnesota opened the second half by outscoring Phoenix 17-6 to take a 41-39 lead.
Aerial Powers, in her first game with Minnesota, scored 18 points. McBride, a fellow newcomer, and Crystal Dangerfield, the 2020 rookie of the year, added 17 points apiece. Sylvia Fowles scored 11 points to move into 17th place on the WNBA’s career list, and she also had 11 rebounds.