UConn’s Paige Bueckers Returns From Injury, Expected to Play Tonight

The reigning Naismith College Player of the Year Paige Bueckers will rejoin the UConn Huskies tonight against St John’s after undergoing surgery last December to repair an anterior tibial plateau fracture and lateral meniscus tear.

The sophomore guard, who suffered the injury against Notre Dame on December 5, has been sidelined for six games this season. Prior to the injury, Bueckers was averaging 21.2 points, 6.2 assist, 5.5 rebounds and 2.7 steals.

“About a month ago, she walked in to athletic training room and she had a big swollen knee and everybody said ‘this is not good,’ and ‘this is going to set you back a long time,’” head coach Geno Auriemma said, per the Hartford Courant. “And she came back two days later and it was gone. I said, ‘what happened?’ and she said, ‘I’m different. I told God I needed the swelling to go down, and it went down.’

“I kid you not, this is the kind of stuff I’ve got to listen to. So the kid just has this knack. She heals at her own pace. We’ll see what happens. ‘Punxsutawney Paige’ If she sees her shadow, two more weeks of rehab? I don’t know.”

Bueckers return comes in at a more perfect time in the season as the Huskies prepare for their final two regular season games ahead of the Big East tournament.