Diana Taurasi, Elena Delle Donne out as Phoenix Mercury, Washington Mystics try to solidify WNBA playoff spots

4:17 PM ET

Kelly CohenESPN

Two of the WNBA’s biggest stars — Phoenix Mercury guard Diana Taurasi (ankle) and Washington Mystics forward Elena Delle Donne (back) — continue to miss time as the regular season winds down.

Taurasi, who is dealing with an ankle injury, will miss her third consecutive game — and 15th overall this season — when the Mercury visit the Seattle Storm on Friday. The Mercury can earn a first-round playoff bye with a victory.

The Mystics will again be without Delle Donne, who played just three games this season after returning from a 22-month hiatus following a pair of back surgeries.

The Mystics (12-18) are holding on to the No. 8 spot and can earn a playoff berth with either a win against the New York Liberty on Friday night or the Minnesota Lynx in Sunday’s regular-season finale.

The WNBA playoffs begin Sept. 23.

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