Bettina Lane of the New York Liberty will return in time for the team’s playoff game

Bettina Lane of the New York Liberty will return in time for the team’s playoff game


of New York Liberty I don’t have much time left to make a playoff push, but they have a top player back to help them do it.

Guard / Forward Bethany Laney He returned to action on Saturday after being sidelined since May with a knee injury. Laney played 21 minutes, had seven points and four rebounds in the Phoenix Liberty’s 76-62 loss.

New York falls to 13-19 and is in ninth place at 14-19. MercuryDespite their lack of stars, they got a big win for their postseason hopes Skylar Diggins-Smith (Covid disease) and Diana Taurasi (four injuries). The top eight teams make the WNBA playoffs.

Lanny’s return could be even more significant if it’s in the future. Natasha Howard Any length of time has passed. Howard left Saturday’s game with a right ankle injury. She is Liberty’s leading scorer and second baseman this season. There was no improvement in Howard’s condition after the game.

“I’m just trying to be my best self when I’m out there,” Laney said when asked what she can bring to Liberty with four games left in the regular season. “I’m just trying to find my rhythm and get my legs back under me. I’m just trying to go out there and play hard.”

Lani had an arthroscopic partial meniscectomy on her right knee on June 1st. She was the Liberty’s leading scorer with 16.8 points per game last season and played four games for New York this season, averaging 13.3 points per game before being sidelined.

She played her first game since May 17 on Saturday.

The former Rutgers standout was the WNBA’s Most Improved Player in 2020. Atlanta Dream Before signing with the Liberty as a free agent in 2021.

“I think she tried hard, she competed,” Liberty coach Sandy Brondello said. “She doesn’t know all the plays and she’s a little lost in some situations. But the minutes we can give her are important going forward.”

Freedom ends the game with back-to-back games Dallas Monday and Wednesday. They then play at Atlanta on Friday and finish the regular season against Atlanta at home in Brooklyn, New York.

“Hopefully, she can help us a lot,” Brondello said of Laney. “Just her strength and her ability to open the floor and get in and post. But she hasn’t played in a while, so I try not to put any big, high expectations on her. I just want her to have it. Patience: All the hard work she’s put in has paid off.

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