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Fever's Catchings top WNBA All-Star vote-getter

NEW YORK -- Indiana Fever forward Tamika Catchings and
Seattle Storm guard Sue Bird were the leading vote-getters among
the WNBA All-Star starters announced Wednesday.


Catchings was the leading vote-getter for the July 12 game at
Madison Square Garden in New York. It is the first time that
Catchings topped the voting, and she has reached the All-Star game
in each of her five seasons.

Bird, a three-time All-Star, received the second-most votes and is one of the West starters.

The league also will debut uniforms for both teams. In the past, starters wore their team uniforms.

Catchings is averaging 16.1 points and 7.9 rebounds this season
for the Fever, which was third in the WNBA's Eastern Conference
entering Wednesday night.

She will be joined in the Eastern Conference starting lineup by
three Connecticut Sun players: forward Nykesha Sales, center Margo
Dydek and guard Lindsay Whalen. New York Liberty guard Becky Hammon
rounds out the starting five.

Bird, averaging 10.3 points, 5.4 assists and 1.67 steals, was
the top vote-getter in the Western Conference. She will be joined
by teammate and forward Lauren Jackson as a starter.

The Houston Comets will also have two starters in forward Sheryl
Swoopes and guard Dawn Staley, while Yolanda Griffith of the
Sacramento Monarchs will start at center.

Reserves will be announced Saturday.

Sacramento's John Whisenant and Connecticut's Mike Thibault earlier were named head coaches the All-Star Game.

The WNBA All-Star Game will be televised July 12 by ESPN at 7 p.m. ET.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.