PHOENIX — Janell Burse made her 2006 debut Thursday, returning to the Storm's starting lineup against the Phoenix Mercury.
Burse, a 6-foot-4 center, missed the past two games with a labrum tear in her left shoulder. She suffered the injury while grabbing a rebound during an April 5 game in Prague.
Burse returned during training camp, but suffered another setback. She said she's not 100 percent healthy and that there is a twinge of pain at times when she is playing.
Burse, a six-year veteran, will not undergo surgery until after the season, however.
"It has to be done if I ever want it to feel normal again," she said.
Mercury guard out with hurt hamstring
The Mercury suffered a hit when MRI results revealed that guard Kelly Miller will be out at least two weeks with a tear in her right hamstring.
New coach Paul Westhead, who runs a fast-paced offensive style dubbed "Paul Ball," said Miller was his best option at getting the system going.
Westhead turned to veteran guard Tamicha Jackson to replace Miller against the Storm.
• The Mercury and Storm are very familiar with each other. The two teams include several Connecticut alums: the Storm's Sue Bird and Barbara Turner and the Mercury's Ann Strother and Diana Taurasi. Then there are the former Storm players, centers Kamila Vodichkova and Mandisa Stevenson.
Game at a glance
Player of the game: Looking to redeem herself after a disappointing game against Houston, when she scored just nine points, Storm forward Lauren Jackson scored freely against Phoenix's weak interior defense, finishing with a career-high 35 points and nine rebounds.
Reserve of the game: Still racking up the minutes, forward Wendy Palmer was in her expected reserve role and playing her signature game, finishing with 10 points and seven rebounds in 23 minutes.
Digits: The Storm had three opportunities to surpass its franchise-record 95 points scored in a home win against Connecticut in June 2005, but couldn't connect on any of its attempts in the waning minutes. Of course, the starters were on the bench.
Next: At Sacramento, Wednesday, 7 p.m., Arco Arena.