The Phoenix Mercury announced today that star guard Diana Taurasi has signed a contract extension with the team. Details of her contract are not yet available, but Taurasi confirmed that she's accepted less money to allow the team more financial flexibility going forward.
"Our salary cap isn't the most flexible, so I think wherever you can get a little bit more room to make some moves in the off-season, it helps the team out a lot," she told the Arizona Republic. "Penny (Taylor) did it last year when she took less to keep some people in town. I think when you want to build a really great team, you have to sacrifice some things. And to me, (money) is the least of my concerns."
"My intention is to win a lot of championships in Phoenix," Taurasi said. "I'm happy to have this contract signed so we can focus on the playoffs and winning another title. We have a great nucleus of players to make a run at the championship this year and I am satisfied knowing the contract we've put together will give us the flexibility to take advantage of opportunities in the offseason."
Mercury President and General Manager Ann Meyers Drysdale said this about Taurasi's decision, "Her decision to make personal sacrifices and structure a contract that allows us the flexibility to add other veteran players through free agency if the opportunity arises speaks volumes about her commitment to winning championships with the Phoenix Mercury."
It was also reported that Taurasi may decide against playing in the WNBA next season to give her body a rest after seven years of playing basketball year-round, including overseas stints in the WNBA offseason.
She may still take a break, reports say, but it appears unlikely she will take all of next season off.
"I think we put together a really good agreement for myself and for the team," said Taurasi, who is in the last year of her current three-year contract. "That pretty much solidifies that I'm coming back next year."