Diana Taurasi Booted From Turkish Team for Doping
Phoenix Mercury star Diana Taurasi's contract with the Turkish women's basketball team Fenerbahce was terminated this morning after she tested positive -- again -- for using a doping agent.
Taurasi, who inked a new deal with the Mercury in August, plays with the Turkish team during the WNBA's off-season.
The substance for which Taurasi tested positive is called Modafinil, which has been banned in several professional sports after athletes like cyclist David Clinger and sprinter Kelli White used it as a performance-enhancing drug.
The drug is commonly used to treat sleep disorders but is also used to help athletes train. It was added to the World Anti-Doping Agency's prohibited list in 2004 as it has "been shown to prolong exercise time to exhaustion while performing at 85 percent of VO2max and also reduces the perception of effort required to maintain this threshold."
NBA Preseason Basketball: Phoenix Suns v. Utah Jazz
TicketsWed., Oct. 5, 7:00pm
Arizona Coyotes vs. San Jose Sharks
TicketsFri., Oct. 7, 7:00pm
TicketsSat., Oct. 8, 7:00pm
NBA Preseason Basketball: Phoenix Suns v. Dallas Mavericks
TicketsFri., Oct. 14, 7:00pm
Taurasi's led the WNBA in scoring four times, including the past three seasons. She was named league MVP in 2009 after leading the Mercury to a championship.
Taurasi's slated to compete in the 2012 Olympic Games in London, which may not happen now that she's she tested positive for performance-enhancing drugs. That decision is yet to be made.
The Mercury have not commented publicly on the matter.
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter
Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts stories — along with film and food reviews and the best things to do this week — so that you'll never miss Phoenix New Times' biggest stories.