Phoenix Mercury announce opening-night roster vs. Sparks

May 19, 2023, 11:34 AM

Phoenix Mercury center Brittney Griner smiles during the first half of a WNBA preseason basketball ...

Phoenix Mercury center Brittney Griner smiles during the first half of a WNBA preseason basketball game against the Los Angeles Sparks, Friday, May 12, 2023, in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Matt York)

(AP Photo/Matt York)

The Phoenix Mercury’s opening-night roster is set ahead of their Friday matchup against the Los Angeles Sparks.

The roster features returning stars Diana Taurasi, Brittney Griner and Skylar Diggins-Smith.

Griner is back in the mix following her 10-month detainment in Russia.

The All-Star center will look to return to her 2021 form of 20.5 points, 9.5 rebounds and 2.7 assists per game. She shot 57.8% from the field.

Phoenix’s roster includes 13 players, though only nine will be available for the season opener.

Center Megan Gustafson (left foot), Shey Peddy (right Achilles) and Sophie Cunningham (left knee) are all listed as out due to injury.

Diggins-Smith, the fourth Mercury player sidelined, is on maternity leave after having her second child and is not with the team.

Diggins-Smith is coming off an All-Star season in which she averaged 19.7 points, four rebounds, 5.5 assists and 1.6 steals across 30 games per game in 2022.

Replacing Diggins-Smith while she’s away is rookie forward Liz Dixon out of Louisville.

And you can’t forget about Taurasi, who embarks on his 19th WNBA season, all with the Mercury.

Taurasi has shown little signs of slowing down, coming off 16.7 points on 45% shooting and 33.7% from deep, 3.4 rebounds and 3.8 assists in 31 minutes per contest last season (30 games played).

A full look at Phoenix’s roster:

Phoenix Mercury opening-night roster

– Sophie Cunningham, G
– Skylar Diggins-Smith, G
– Liz Dixon, C
– Brittney Griner, C
– Megan Gustafson, C
– Moriah Jefferson, G
– Michaela Onyenwere, F
– Shey Peddy, G
– Kadi Sissoko, F
– Sug Sutton, G
– Diana Taurasi, G
– Brianna Turner, F
– Evina Westbrook, G

The Mercury and Sparks tip things off at 8 p.m. on Friday night.

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