August 11, 2022

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It appears exhausting to think about, however Phoenix Mercury star Diana Taurasi discovered much more...

It appears exhausting to think about, however Phoenix Mercury star Diana Taurasi discovered much more rarified air to be in Thursday evening.

Taurasi scored 30 factors in Phoenix’s 90-80 win over the Los Angeles Sparks, turning into the primary WNBA participant in league historical past to attain 30 or extra at age 40 or older. She additionally joined Michael Jordan and Dirk Nowitzki as solely the third to do it in NBA/WNBA historical past.

“Nicely, I imply, at this level — we had been simply speaking about it within the hallway — while you’re outdated, all the things’s a document,” Taurasi stated. “The primary particular person to overlook 15 3s in a sport over 40. First particular person to have 4 offensive fouls in a two-minute span over 40.

“So, not less than at this level, I’m simply pleased with a win. We may be the most effective crew at 40, then I’m comfortable.”

With the win, the Mercury jumped into sixth place within the WNBA standings, placing them squarely within the playoff race. Phoenix has a 76% likelihood of creating the playoffs, based on the WNBA BPI, a charge that would shift in a single day however not by a lot.

Taurasi, who turned 40 on June 11, completed 12-for-20 from the sector, together with 5-for-13 from 3-point vary, and was 11-for-12 from the free throw line. Thursday evening was Taurasi’s twenty seventh sport with 30 factors and 5 3-pointers, which is greater than all of the WNBA franchises have individually. The Minnesota Lynx are closest with 19.

This was her eighth sport this season with 5 or extra 3-pointers, the second-most in WNBA historical past behind the ten video games she did it in in 2006. It was additionally Taurasi’s 52nd profession 30-point sport — 20 greater than another participant in WNBA historical past.

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Skylar Diggins-Smith had 27 factors, six assists and 5 rebounds earlier than she was ejected with 7:48 left within the sport after she obtained two technicals for arguing a foul name.

“She made me proud,” Taurasi stated jokingly earlier than calling Diggins-Smith’s ejection “unlucky.”

Chennedy Carter led the Sparks with 23 factors and Nneka Ogwumike had 11 rebounds.

Phoenix is now 13-16 with seven video games left. The Mercury would lengthen their playoff streak to 10 straight appearances ought to they maintain on to a spot for the postseason.

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