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WNBA: Minnesota Lynx beat Los Angeles Sparks as Napheesa Collier’s absence jeopardizes Olympic participation

WNBA: Minnesota Lynx beat Los Angeles Sparks as Napheesa Collier’s absence jeopardizes Olympic participation

Napheesa Collier missed her second consecutive game due to a problem with her left foot as the Minnesota Lynx beat the Los Angeles Sparks in the Women’s NBA.

The 27-year-old Olympic champion is currently recovering from plantar fasciitis, which forced her to limp off the court during Saturday’s victory over the Washington Mystics.

However, their absence could not stop the Lynx from recording their seventh consecutive win over the Los Angeles team, winning 82-67 on Tuesday night at Crypto.com Arena.

The win keeps them at the top of the Western Conference after 22 games, ahead of the Seattle Storm, and in third place in the overall standings behind the New York Liberty and the Connecticut Sun.

Collier has suffered from plantar fasciitis since her college days, and with the Paris Olympics just around the corner, Lynx coach Cheryl Reeve doesn’t want to take any chances.

Reeve, who also coaches Collier on the U.S. Olympic team, said her return to the WNBA depends on her fitness for this summer’s games.

“It’s definitely on our minds. There’s no way I’m going to sit here and say we’re not considering it,” Reeve said before the Sparks’ win as the coaching staff planned for a return.

“In the situation she’s in, the best thing for us is to just take it day by day.”

With just three games left until Collier is scheduled to compete in the All-Star Game between Team USA and Team WNBA, just one week before basketball competition begins at the Paris Games on Saturday, July 27.

Collier was a first-team All-WNBA selection last year and averaged 20 points, 10.2 rebounds and 3.7 assists this season.

After representing the nation at the 2021 Tokyo Olympics, she was named to the United States 5-on-5 Olympic team for the second time in her career last month and helped her country win the gold medal after defeating host Japan 90-75 in the final.

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