The New York Liberty provided an update on the status of Sabrina Ionescu on Saturday. The top overall pick responded in style.
No matter when Sabrina Ionescu is ready to return, it appears that the New York Liberty’s top overall pick will be ready to go.
The Liberty released an update on their injured rookie attraction on Saturday, declaring that she will not need surgery to repair a sprained ankle sustained in the Liberty’s July 31 tilt against Atlanta. Ionescu has been rehabbing in New York while her teammates continue to work their way through the WNBA’s 2020 proceedings in the Bradenton bubble.
“(She) has been evaluated and physicians have determined that no surgery is needed,” a statement from the Liberty reads. “She has received a positive prognosis for a full recovery and is continuing to rehab.”
Ionescu took to her Instagram story to respond to the news.
— Geoff Magliocchetti (@GeoffJMags) August 22, 2020
Prior to her injury, Ionescu averaged 18.3 points (on 45 percent shooting) and 4.7 rebounds. The University of Oregon alumna earned a fair amount of hype leading to her selection in the WNBA Draft in April. She is by far the NCAA’s all-time leader in triple-doubles (26) and has also taken home countless hardwood accolades, including the Associated Press’ most recent Player of the Year honor. Ionescu came close to her first professional triple-double in her second game as New York, earning 33 points and seven assists and rebounds each on July 29 against Dallas.
Ionescu, 22, has since been rehabbing in both New York and California. Other recent Instagram highlights included dinner in Marina Del Rey with her close friend and fellow Walnut Creek, California native Bree Alford and a movie night with the wife and children of the late Kobe Bryant. Ionescu shared a strong relationship with Bryant and his teenage daughter Gianna prior to their deaths in a helicopter crash in January and continues to socialize with Bryant’s widow Vanessa and his surviving children Bianka, Natalia, and Capri.
Ionescu’s teammates have been in constant contact with her and head coach Walt Hopkins has discussed the team’s ongoing bubble endeavors over the phone and video calls.
“Different people have reached out,” fellow rookie Jocelyn Willoughby said. “We know she’s watching and supporting us. She told us to hang in there and keep fighting.”
“I’m super happy for Sabrina,” veteran forward/center Kiah Stokes added. “I talk to her often. Her morale is high…she’s excited to restart rehab and get back. She’s a workhorse, so she’s going to be ready for next season”
The remaining Liberty representatives return to action on Saturday night in Bradenton as they take on the Connecticut Sun (7 p.m. ET, YES/CBSSN).
Geoff Magliocchetti is on Twitter @GeoffJMags