UConn star guard Paige Bueckers, last season’s Naismith Women’s Player of the Year, will be out six-to-eight weeks with a tibial plateau fracture, the Huskies announced Tuesday. An MRI and CT scan revealed the injury, which Bueckers sustained on a non-contact play while dribbling up the court in the final minute of No. 3 UConn’s 73-54 win over Notre Dame on Sunday.
“Obviously, we’re all extremely disappointed for Paige and that she suffered this injury,” UConn coach Geno Auriemma said. “It would be really hard to describe how much basketball means to Paige and how much her teammates mean to her. Not being able to do the thing that she loves to do, to be there for her teammates, is really difficult for her. We’ve had players get injured in the past and my philosophy here is, I’m not interested in how fast we can get someone back; I’m interested in what’s best for them long term. Every decision made will prioritize what’s best for Paige and her career. Everyone involved with this program will be there to support Paige through her healing process.”
Bueckers, a sophomore, is averaging 21.2 points per game this season. She is also UConn’s leader in assists and steals. Her extended absence is not ideal for the Huskies, but the timetable for Bueckers’ return means she should be back in plenty of time for postseason play.
That is critical for a program that will be aiming for its first national championship since 2016. The Huskies’ only loss so far this season came against No. 1 South Carolina.