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Beard, Mystics no longer in background

Updated: July 31, 2006, 12:56 PM ET
By Nancy Lieberman | Special to ESPN.com

Thursday was just another ordinary night in the WNBA.

Chicago lost. Houston won. And, as usual, all eyes were on Diana Taurasi.

And for good reason. The Phoenix All-Star -- who's a fan favorite from coast to coast after winning three straight NCAA titles at Connecticut -- tied this season's single-game scoring high with a career-best 41 points. Though the Mercury ended up losing, the second straight defeat in what has become a four-game skid, Taurasi also became the first player ...

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