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Phoenix stops Storm, takes home-court edge

FRIDAY, SEPT. 11, 2009

Diana Taurasi scored five of her 22 points in overtime, and the Phoenix Mercury went on to a 92-84 victory against the injury-depleted Seattle Storm on Thursday night at Seattle, clinching home-court advantage for the entire WNBA playoffs.

Cappie Pondexter had 18 points for Phoenix (23-10). The Mercury’s win, coupled with Eastern Conference-leading Indiana’s 86-79 loss at Chicago, helped guarantee them the top seed in every playoff series.

Tanisha Wright scored 24 points to lead the Storm (19-14), who played without All-Stars Lauren Jackson (back), Sue Bird (neck) and Swin Cash. Shannon Johnson and Janelle Burse had 15 apiece. Seattle has secured second place in the West and will have home court in the first round.

Bird agrees to extension

Sue Bird has agreed to a multiyear contract extension to stay with the Storm, keeping the All-Star guard with the only WNBA team for which she’s played.

Terms of the deal for the former UConn star were not released.

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