Sparks Shine, Mercury Struggle: Analysis 

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 Los Angeles Sparks defeated Phoenix Mercury 98-85 with strong performances from Dearica Hamby and Zia Cooke, scoring 21 points each.

 Los Angeles Victory

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 Phoenix struggled in preseason, going winless in two games, despite Kahleah Copper's 16 points and Diana Taurasi's 13 points.

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Phoenix Struggle

The Mercury faced foul trouble, committing 30 fouls, leading to 28-of-31 free throws made by the Sparks.

Foul Trouble

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 Hamby's dominant third-quarter performance helped the Sparks widen the gap, despite Phoenix's efforts to stay in the game.

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 Hamby Dominance

 Diana Taurasi's leadership sparked a comeback attempt for the Mercury, but Cooke's late-game scoring secured the victory for Los Angeles.

 Taurasi Leadership

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 While Phoenix had 14 steals and forced 24 turnovers, Los Angeles dominated the boards with a 42-20 rebounding advantage and led in points in the paint, 32-18.

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 Statistical Contrast