She may be down, but Elena Delle Donne certainly is not out of the WNBA Finals.
In fact, she and fellow Mystics starter Ariel Atkins, who both entered Game 3 with back problems, reportedly aren’t on the Mystics injury report for Tuesday’s game between Washington and the Connecticut Sun, per multiple sources.
Sleep certainly hasn’t been easy to come by since Delle Donne was diagnosed with a herniated disc in her back following Washington’s Game 2 loss to the Connecticut Sun. But the 30-year-old has plenty of other strategies to cope with the pain.
“I do a lot of deep breathing just to try help loosen my muscles and try to focus away from the pain,” she said, per the WNBA. “I mean, I’m trying to do whatever’s possible just to be out there.”
For now, she’s hoping she’ll feel better for Game 4 than she did for Game 3. “But, you really never know.”
So, what hurts more: her 2018 knee injury? Or this?
“This hurts more,” she said without hesitation. “Yeah. Knees, I feel like they’re achy, they hurt, but you can push through. And backs, you take one wrong step and it feels like you’re paralyzed. So, this is worse.”
Game 4 of the WNBA Finals tips off at Mohegan Sun Arena on Tuesday at 8 p.m. ET.