The Minnesota Lynx began their training camp just a week ago on April 25. Although there will no longer be a Wubble this season, there was still going to be a ton of turbulence heading into this year — COVID threats/restrictions, atypical overseas schedules, and preparation for the summer Olympics.
The @minnesotalynx training camp kicked off yesterday and team chemistry is flowing!— Ricky Rude-Leo (@Y0Leo) April 26, 2021
Get your first look at @aerial_powers23, @NatAchon, and @Legend_Hooper at Lynx practice ⬇️ pic.twitter.com/TJa9hCtKDM
Every team will have to face various obstacles this year, but the Lynx appear to be more hampered than most. With two starters, and likely their top players, Napheesa Collier and Kayla McBride unlikely to be available until late-May due to their extended overseas playoff runs, the Lynx will need to try and stay afloat. Coach Reeve will need to lean on a number of other players, but has specifically mentioned the leadership of Crystal Dangerfield, Bridget Carleton’s versatility, the return of Jessica Shepard, and the good health of Sylvia Fowles throughout training camp thus far. Minnesota plays 5 of their 32 regular season games in the month of May.
In the spirit of good stuff flowing on our timelines:— Ricky Rude-Leo (@Y0Leo) April 27, 2021
Here's some @minnesotalynx training camp video today while @LynxCoachReeve shares her thoughts on Collier & McBride likely to miss the start of the season. Also @crystald2_ on what she's bringing this year. Enjoy! pic.twitter.com/mVvXnxXheg
But if losing two key starters wasn’t enough...
Rennia Davis Injury
NEWS: Rennia Davis Injury Update— Lynx PR (@Lynx_PR) May 1, 2021
Full Release: https://t.co/gfuKHsqlIB
Before Rennia Davis was even able to don a Minnesota Lynx jersey, she will not be sidelined indefinitely. It certainly doesn’t sound good as the road to recovery could possibly range the entire length of the season, at worst. This loss hurts even more considering the absences of Collier and McBride, as mentioned above. Coach Reeve had a lot of positive things to say about Davis prior to this injury, envisioning her getting minutes early. Let’s all send Rennia our best and pray that science will allow me to donate my foot to her.
I asked Cheryl Reeve about more information on Rennia Davis' foot injury. Mentioned it popped up at the end of her college career and wasn't able to relay where exactly the foot injury is. "That's above my pay grade." Sounded like she will be out for an extended period of time.— Lucas Seehafer (@seehafer_) May 1, 2021
Reeve added that she will likely have to "do more GM'ing than she would like to" to get through the rest of training camp and leading up to the start of the season.— Mitchell Hansen (@M_Hansen13) May 1, 2021
It will be interesting to see how the roster rounds out, especially with essentially 3 players absent. #Lynx
On Saturday, the Lynx hit the road to take on the Atlanta Dream in just 1 of their 2 preseason games. Most teams have come into these games viewing them as glorified scrimmages than anything, considering the extremely abridged timeline they are all working with. That said, the Dream won the contest 69-61 with the majority of minutes going to players fighting for a roster spot. PLEASE EXPAND THE LEAGUE!
Notably absent from the box score is one of the other prized offseason acquisitions of the offseason, Aerial Powers. Although Powers had said herself that she felt 100% recovered from the hamstring injury that kept her out for the majority of last season, Coach Reeve isn’t taking any chances.
Cheryl Reeve said Aerial Powers' reps "were pretty low, but will go up this week." #Lynx— Mitchell Hansen (@M_Hansen13) May 1, 2021
None of the WNBA preseason games, that I’m aware of, are being broadcasted anywhere. Many of us know just how difficult it is to get access to NBA preseason games, but so, this is just another example of the inequalities and obstacles the WNBA faces. However, there are still some heroes out there - @itsBTerrell broadcasted as much of the game as he could, live on Twitter.
This Saturday, the Lynx welcome the Washington Mystics to Minnesota for their second and final preseason tune-up. Just six days after that, the regular season will open with their season & home opener against the Phoenix Mercury on 5/14. There’s likely to be plenty of training camp cuts and final roster changes that will take place in the coming weeks, so we’ll be sure to keep you up to date.
They’ll start with 10 healthy players if those two haven’t cleared COVID quarantine. That’s where the emergency hardship exemption rule applies. Hard to imagine the league letting any team open with less than ten players in this COVID environment.— Patrick Borzi (@BorzMN) May 1, 2021