SEATTLE – Candace Parker scored 22 points and keyed a second-quarter run that led the Los Angeles Sparks over the Seattle Storm 75-64 Sunday in the deciding third game of the WNBA Western Conference semifinals.
It was the second straight year the Sparks eliminated the Storm in the opening round by winning Game 3 in Seattle. Los Angeles bounced back from Friday night’s 75-74 loss in Game 2, in which the Storm scored five points in the final 14 seconds.
The Sparks advanced to play the winner of the Phoenix-San Antonio series for the conference championship. The Mercury and Silver Stars play Game 3 tonight in Phoenix.
Parker scored six points during an early 13-0 burst that gave the Sparks a big cushion.
The WNBA has been forced to move the Sparks out of Staples Center for the next round of the playoffs because of a Britney Spears concert and a heavyweight title fight.
The Sparks will instead host the Phoenix-San Antonio winner in the Western Conference finals at UCLA’s Pauley Pavilion. Spears has booked Staples for Wednesday, and Vladimir Klitschko and Chris Arreola will hold their WBC bout there Saturday.