Tuesday , September 27 2022

Minnesota Lynx’s Napheesa Collier making 2022 WNBA debut less than 3 months after giving birth to daughter

Napheesa Collier will make her 2022 season debut Sunday with the Minnesota Lynx less than three months after giving birth to her daughter, Mila, in late May.

Collier, the 2019 WNBA rookie of the year and a former all-WNBA Second Team selection, returns to the hardwood as the Lynx (12-20) make a late push in attempt to clinch a playoff spot. Minnesota is currently in 10th place on the outside looking in with four games remaining in the regular season and 1½ games back of securing one of the remaining three spots in the postseason.

Collier, 25, indicated during her pregnancy that she hoped to return at some point this summer to play alongside teammate and friend Sylvia Fowles before Fowles’ impending retirement following the 2022 campaign.

The Star Tribune reported Saturday that Collier practiced fully with the team that day for the first time this season and was ramping up to potentially play this week.

The former UConn standout and 2020 Tokyo Olympian averaged 16.2 points, 6.2 rebounds, 3.2 assists, 1.3 steals and 1.3 blocks per game in 2021, her third season in the league. Collier signed a multiyear contract extension with the Lynx in the offseason that will keep her in Minnesota through 2025.

The Lynx take on the Atlanta Dream — another team hoping to punch its ticket to the postseason this week — Sunday at 7 p.m. ET.

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