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Odyssey Sims, Sylvia Fowles help Lynx beat Storm 72-61

Seattle's Natasha Howard played Sunday in the Storm’s 78-69 win over the New York Liberty amid allegations of domestic abuse. (Olivia Vanni / Associated Press)
Seattle's Natasha Howard played Sunday in the Storm’s 78-69 win over the New York Liberty amid allegations of domestic abuse. (Olivia Vanni / Associated Press)
Associated Press

MINNEAPOLIS – Odyssey Sims had 15 points, Sylvia Fowles grabbed 13 rebounds and the Minnesota Lynx beat the defending champion Seattle Storm 72-61 on Wednesday night.

The teams have combined to win six of the last nine WNBA titles, but the marquee matchup a season ago looked much different without stars Maya Moore, Lindsay Whalen, Sue Bird and Breanna Stewart on the court.

Minnesota jumped out to a 22-9 lead at the end of the first quarter as Seattle was just 4 of 16 from the field. The Lynx led by 15 points at the half after holding Seattle to 31-percent shooting and Sims made it 44-24 early in the third.

Damiris Dantas added 12 points for Minnesota (2-0). Napheesa Collier, who scored the second-most points in a rookie debut last week, scored nine points in 25 minutes.

Natasha Howard, who had 21 points and a career-high 16 rebounds in Seattle’s opener, scored 18 points for the Storm (1-1). Jewell Loyd added 13 points for Seattle, which started a three-game road swing over a four-day span. Last season, Seattle snapped a 16-game road-losing streak in the series.

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