Chicago Sky forward Elena Delle Donne has been ruled out for the team’s first game against the Atlanta Dream scheduled for Sunday. Delle Donne first suffered the injury back on September 8, which caused her to leave the team’s game against the Washington Mystics.
With the veteran forward averaging over 33 minutes a night and leading her team in points, rebounds, three-point percentage and free throw percentage, the Sky will be in scramble mode without Delle Donne. Around her, they have assembled a unit that has gone just 18-16 season, with no player sans Delle Donne having started every game they have appeared in.
The onus of carrying the offense will fall to the trio of Cappie Pondexter, Tamera Young and Courtney Vandersloot, who have all averaged over eight points per game this season even with Delle Donne on the floor. Coming off the bench will be Allie Quigley, who has averaged 9.5 points per game this season while playing just over 17 minutes per night.
Delle Donne seemed to be in cruise control on her way to another league MVP, averaging 21.5 points and seven rebounds per game prior to her injury. Shooting 42.6 percent from long distance and knocking down 93.5 of her free throws, the Sky’s one-woman wrecking crew will have to watch her team fight for their playoff lives from the sidelines.
The reigning MVP is coming off of a successful summer in the Rio de Janeiro Olympics while managing a gold medal for Team USA. Things have proven more difficult with the Sky, who seeded fourth and will matchup against the sixth-seeded Dream beginning this Sunday, down their best player however.