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San Antonio Stars vs. Phoenix Mercury preview

The Mercury host the Stars for their first meeting of the season and the Stars' third game in a week.

Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports

During the five days between the Stars' home opener-win against the Tulsa Shock and tonight's road game against the Phoenix Mercury, second-year player Davellyn Whyte sustained an ACL tear and will miss the 2014 season. This is a recording. Barring any other knee-ligament related damage, the Stars will be down to a 10-woman roster tonight (assuming Becky Hammon will also miss tonight's game).

Then again...

The Mercury were a weird team in 2013. Diana Taurasi is incredible at basketballing and Brittney Griner wore the weight of the world's* expectations on her shoulders. With those expectations came a bit of disappointment in the team's start in 2013 -- head coach Corey Gaines was fired midway through the season. Russ Pennell seemed to be an adequate enough replacement as the team made it to the western conference finals before being swept at the hands of the Lynx.

The reality of the situation is that nobody was beating Minnesota last year (and it's going to be tough to do it this year, too) so the Mercury's season should be billed as a success. They should only be better this season now that Griner has a year under her belt and the team has had a chance to play together for a full season. Barring injuries (which will probably be a concern for Griner her whole career) the Mercury have as good a shot as anyone at taking down the Lynx this summer.

Phoenix comes in with a 2-0 record under new head coach (and former Stars head coach) Sandy Brondello, who wins the contest for most-Australian-sounding-name in the WNBA. At least, until someone named Gator McGiantDeathSpider joins the league. They've dispatched the Storm at home (meh) and the Sparks on the road (oh) so this is going to be a tough challenge for the Stars who May Or May Not be playing with Hammon tonight.

Tip-off is at 9:00 p.m. CST in the US Airways Arena in Phoenix.