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Monique Currie to return from ACL injury Thursday
When Washington Mystics forward Monique Currie tore the ACL in her left knee in January, the team expected her to miss the entire 2011 season. But after progressing through the rehab process ahead of schedule, Currie will return to the Mystics lineup Thursday night when Washington hosts Atlanta, according to a team-issued press release.
Mystics Coach Trudi Lacey had hinted in July that Currie might be able to make a late-season return, and it appears that scenario will come to fruition. Barring a setback, Currie will be available to play in four of Washington’s final five games. She will not play Friday at Atlanta (16-13), the Mystics’ second contest in as many days.
Washington (5-24) has lost 10 of its past 11 games – including nine straight defeats – and will look to receive a boost from Currie, who averaged 14.1 points and 4.8 rebounds per contest in 2010. Currie, a six-year veteran, also shot 44.6 percent from three-point range last season. The Mystics are shooting 33.6 percent from beyond the arc this year, which ranks No. 10 in the 12-team WNBA.
As a dismal season winds to a close, Washington has been in a bit of flux recently. Lacey restructured the starting lineup during Tuesday’s game at Minnesota to include three new members. Rookie point guard Jasmine Thomas, forward DeMaya Walker and Kerri Gardin joined forward Crystal Langhorne and guard Matee Ajavon as starters. It was the first time this summer Lacey altered the starting lineup by choice and not due to injury.
Thomas, Walker and Gardin combined to shoot 6 for 23 (26 percent) from the field, and the Mystics lost, 73-56.
Mystics add another logo to their jerseys
Starting Tuesday night, the Inova Health System logo of the front of all Washington Mystics’ game jerseys will share space with the Boost Mobile brand.
The jersey’s design change stems from a multiyear deal between the WNBA and Boost Mobile announced on Monday that will make the telecommunications company the first leaguewide marquee partner of the WNBA. Nine other teams (the Atlanta Dream, Chicago Sky, Connecticut Sun, Indiana Fever, Los Angeles Sparks, Minnesota Lynx, New York Liberty, Seattle Storm and Tulsa Shock) will also make room for the Boost Mobile logo “prominently featured” on the front of their jerseys as part of the marketing partnership. Only two teams in the WNBA, San Antonio and Phoenix, won’t have Boost Mobile on their jerseys because of existing mobile deals.
Mystics’ Alana Beard: ‘It’s sort of like we’re starting from scratch again’
There was a time this season when Washington Mystics guard Alana Beard was convinced the pain on the outside of her left foot had subsided enough that she could return to game action.
So Beard – a four-time WNBA all-star who sat out all of the 2010 season with a tendon injury in her left ankle – participated in a practice following the team’s mid-July West Coast road trip. A foot sprain suffered during the preseason had prevented Beard from playing in any regular season games this summer, and she had grown restless watching from the sideline as the Mystics (4-15) stumbled into the Eastern Conference dweller.
“At that point, I was like, ‘I am ready.’ I felt great,” Beard said Thursday. “I still had a little tightness in one area. But I got back on the court, was going up and down, and it just felt good. And I went to make a cut, and something else [in the same area of the foot] popped. It was pretty painful. I could barely walk.
“I kind of just stepped off to the side because it was almost like I didn’t want everyone to say, ‘Oh my God, Alana’s hurt again,’ which I was. So I kind of stepped off to the side and calmly walked off to the back where [team trainer] Navin [Hettiarachchi] was, and I said, ‘Something popped.’ And at that point, Navin and I were just like, ‘What more can happen?’”
For Beard – who was drafted by the Mystics in 2004 – not much will happen on the court in the near future. After re-aggravating her foot injury in July, she did so again when she tried to return to practice last week. The team announced Wednesday she will miss the rest of the season.Continue reading this post »
Alana Beard to miss remainder of 2011 season
Washington Mystics guard Alana Beard will miss the remainder of the season after re-aggravating a left foot injury originally suffered during preseason training camp, the team announced Wednesday.
The Mystics (4-15) initially described Beard’s injury as a foot sprain. Beard re-aggravated the injury the first time after returning to practice in late July. When the four-time WNBA all-star re-aggravated the injury a second time after returning to practice last week, team medical officials advised Beard and Coach Trudi Lacey that it would be best to shut the player down for the remainder of the season.
“I tried my best to join my teammates on the court, but after several consultations with our doctors and trainers the decision that made the most sense was to focus on getting completely healthy for next season,” Beard said in a statement. “I am disappointed that I won’t get the chance to compete with my teammates in front of the best fans in the WNBA, but I look forward to returning on the court in 2012.”
Beard has averaged 16.2 points, 4.2 rebounds and 1.9 steals per game during the six healthy seasons of her professional career. She sat out all of Washington’s 2010 campaign with an ankle tendon injury and did not play in any regular season games this season, at the end of which she will become a free agent.
“Alana has spent the season tirelessly rehabbing and doing everything possible to come back this season,” Lacey said in a statement. “Unfortunately, the collective decision based on the evaluation of our trainers and doctors is that she continue her rehab, get stronger and prepare for next season.
“Our team will continue to work hard, compete and we look forward to finishing the season on a positive note.”
Washington, which owns the worst record in the Eastern Conference, will host New York (13-9) at Verizon Center on Friday at 7 p.m.