Breanna Stewart’s Comeback Is Going to Take a Little Longer
Along with the rest of the world, athletes have had their careers upended by the coronavirus pandemic. They are giving The New York Times an intimate look at their journeys in periodic installments through the rest of the year.
Over the last decade Breanna Stewart has dominated her sport as few ever have. She won four national titles in four seasons at the University of Connecticut — and won Most Outstanding Player in the Final Four each year — earned Olympic gold and was the W.N.B.A.’s Rookie of the Year in 2016. She led the Seattle Storm to a championship in 2018, winning the Most Valuable Player Award along the way.
That dominance has not been a golden parachute, though. As a pro, the slender, 6-foot-4 Stewart has followed other elite female basketball players who play nearly year-round, in foreign leagues in China and Europe to maximize their earnings. While playing for a Russian team in the 2019 EuroLeague championship game, Stewart ruptured her right Achilles’ tendon. After months of difficult post-surgery rehab and doubt, she was finally feeling like herself and readying for her first full season back in the W.N.B.A., which had been scheduled to start on May 15. Then the world changed.
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