STORRS, Connecticut — Star UConn women's basketball guard Paige Bueckers will miss the 2022-2023 season due to an injury, according to the UConn Athletics Department.
Bueckers suffered a torn anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) in her left knee on Monday during a pick-up basketball game. She underwent an MRI Monday evening to confirm the injury, officials said.
The rising junior will undergo surgery on Friday at UConn Health. Her timeline of recovery will be made after to procedure.
Bueckers posted on her Instagram shortly after the announcement saying,
"It’s so so crazy because you work so hard to get back healthy, you feel stronger than ever, and you are playing your best basketball and with one sudden movement it all shifts. It’s hard trying to make sense of it all now but I can’t help but think that God is using me as a testimony as to how much you can overcome with Him by your side.
Some little kid that just tore their ACL or had a major surgery might need this story P, because it’s going to be one hell of a comeback. There is going to be good days and there is going to be bad days but my absolute love for the game and Godly strength will get me back to where I need to be. I’ve worked too hard for the little kid in these pictures to keep going for the dreams Ive had since I first picked up the ball, so why would I stop now?
The prayers and love means so much to me and the doubts that I won’t get back to where I was might mean even more. God put a dream in my heart and even if I have to walk through a nightmare to get it I’m going to keep believing. All love, P"
The university did not say where Bueckers was playing when the injury occurred.
"We’re all devastated for Paige," UConn coach Geno Auriemma said in a statement. "She’s worked really hard to get stronger and healthier this offseason, and this is an unfortunate setback. Paige is obviously an amazing basketball player but she’s a better person and teammate and it’s really unfortunate that this has happened to her. We’ll miss her presence on the court, but she’ll do everything she can to still lead and help her teammates this season. Our program will support Paige through her healing process to help her come back better and stronger."
Bueckers was named the 2020-21 AP National Player of the Year, becoming the first freshman to earn that honor. She averaged 20.1 points, 5.9 assists and 2.3 steals per game and hit 45.9% on 3-point shooting that season.
She missed 19 games last season after suffering a left knee tibia plateau fracture and torn meniscus in early December. But she returned to lead the Huskies to the Final Four, where the Huskies lost to South Carolina in the championship game.
She finished the year averaging 14.6 points, 4.0 rebounds and 3.9 assists per game.
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