MINNEAPOLIS (AP) -- With the playoffs looming and Minnesota preparing to make a run at its third straight WNBA finals appearance, the franchise is taking steps to keep its talent in a Lynx uniform.
The Lynx signed All-Star forward Seimone Augustus to a three-year contract extension on Friday, the second star player they've locked up in the last week. All-Star point guard Lindsay Whalen also recently signed a three-year deal.
''We are thrilled to have extended the contract of one of the league's premier scorers and a cornerstone for our franchise over the last eight years,'' Lynx executive vice president Roger Griffith said in a statement.
Augustus is in her eighth season with the Lynx, who took her No. 1 overall in the 2006 draft. She is averaging 16.3 points this season and shooting a career-high 51.6 percent from the field to help the Lynx lock up the top seed in the Western Conference. They will face the Seattle Storm in the first round of the playoffs, with Game 1 scheduled for Sept. 20.
Augustus and Whalen have teamed with Maya Moore and Rebekkah Brunson to lead the Lynx to a WNBA-best 25-8 record heading into Saturday's game against the Chicago Sky (23-9). The Sky have clinched the No. 1 seed in the East.
Augustus was the MVP of the 2011 finals against Atlanta, when she averaged 24.7 points in the three-game sweep that delivered the franchise's first championship. She has made three All-Star teams and won two Olympic gold medals.
''Throughout her Lynx career, Seimone has been an integral piece of the development of our franchise, setting club records for scoring, field goals and games played,'' Griffith said. ''She's considered one of the game's most dangerous players with the ball in her hands and we are extremely excited that she will be continuing her career in a Lynx uniform.''