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Connecticut Sun, Seattle Storm to face off in WNBA's inaugural Commissioner's Cup championship game

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Sun advances to WNBA Commissioner's Cup championship (0:39)

Brionna Jones scores this buzzer-beater to end the first quarter as the Connecticut Sun beat the Atlanta Dream. (0:39)

Connecticut and Seattle have advanced to the championship game of the WNBA's inaugural Commissioner's Cup, which will be played Aug. 12.

The Sun secured the Eastern Conference's slot in that game with their 84-72 victory over Atlanta on Friday. Seattle lost 85-77 to Phoenix on Friday but still clinched the Western Conference berth when Minnesota beat Las Vegas 77-67 later in the evening.

The Commissioner's Cup is a new in-season competition that designates a portion of regular-season games from the first half of the season -- 10 per team, 60 total -- to count toward Cup standings. The Sun are 8-1 in Cup games, so they've already clinched their spot regardless of the outcome of Sunday's Cup game against New York. Connecticut is 13-6 overall.

Las Vegas dropped to 5-4 in Cup standings with Friday's loss, while Seattle is 7-2. Even if the Storm lose and the Lynx win Sunday -- which would put both at 7-3 -- Seattle owns the tiebreaker with two victories against Minnesota. The Storm lead the WNBA at 15-5 overall.

The Cup will have total prize money of $500,000. Members of the Cup's winning team can earn in excess of $30,000 per player, with the runner-up team getting $10,000 per player. The game's MVP will earn an additional $5,000.

The Commissioner's Cup guarantees an East-West matchup, which the WNBA Finals do not anymore since the playoff format changed in 2016 to seed all eight playoff teams by record regardless of conference.

"You're adding an extra game, which isn't that inconvenient, and you're playing for some bonus money," Connecticut guard Briann January said of making the Cup final. "So that's nice. I hope it does what it's intended to do, which is bring some buzz to the league, bring some excitement, have fans tune in."

The first half of the WNBA's regular season ends Sunday, as the league breaks for the All-Star Game on Wednesday in Las Vegas (7 p.m. ET, ESPN/ESPN App) and the Tokyo Olympics on July 23 through Aug. 8.

After the Commissioner's Cup final, the WNBA regular season resumes Aug. 15.