LOS ANGELES — Candace Parker registered 20 points and 10 rebounds for her third double-double of the season to help the Los Angeles Sparks post an 81-71 victory over the visiting Minnesota Lynx on Tuesday night, Aug. 20.
Chelsea Gray added 17 points for Los Angeles (16-10), which snapped a two-game slide. Alexis Jones scored a career-best 15 off the bench as the Sparks won their ninth straight home game.
Lexie Brown made five 3-pointers and scored 20 points off the bench for Minnesota (13-15), which lost its third straight game. Napheesa Collier added 14 points and Temi Fagbenle had 10.
The Lynx trailed by as many as 30 but made it a game by outscoring Los Angeles 27-13 in the fourth quarter and by 20 over the final 13 minutes.
Minnesota shot 43.3 percent and was 8 of 31 from behind the arc.
The Sparks shot 48.3 percent from the field and were 7 of 19 from 3-point range.
The game appeared destined to be a huge blowout when Los Angeles led by 30 with 5:55 left in the third quarter. Gray hit back-to-back 3-pointers, Sydney Wiese scored on a layup and Parker hit a jumper to make it 64-34.
But later in the third quarter, Minnesota started a 16-0 run. Brown buried a 3-pointer to end the burst to pull the Lynx within 68-54 with 6:56 left in the contest.
Brown connected on a jumper to bring Minnesota within 71-59 with 4:46 remaining. Odyssey Sims drove for a basket to cut the Sparks' lead to 74-64 with 2:20 left.
Brown's 3-pointer with 1:23 remaining brought the Lynx within seven.
Parker answered with a 3-pointer 14 seconds later to push the Los Angeles lead back to 10.
Gray converted a three-point play with 43 seconds remaining to give the Sparks an 80-69 advantage as they closed it out.
Jones scored 15 first-half points to spark Los Angeles to a 49-32 lead.
The Sparks led 18-14 after one quarter before making 13 of 18 shots in the second.
Jones buried a 3-pointer to cap a 14-2 surge that gave Los Angeles a 34-23 lead with 4:46 left. The advantage reached 18 on Nneka Ogwumike's basket with 2:41 left.