Heartbreaking Injury to 36YO Veteran Has Teammates in Tears as WNBA Game Comes to a Halt

Published 09/05/2023, 5:50 AM EDT

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Injuries can often derail the most promising careers in sports, Derrick Rose serves as a perfect example of this as his MVP status no longer holds the weight that it once had. While injuries are a common feature of any sport, it is never an easy sight to behold. A WNBA game between the Los Angeles Sparks and Washington Mystics recently came to a halt as a freak injury caused many players to break down.

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This particular incident also adds to the WNBA’s injury epidemic as 11 out of the 12 teams have at least one player on the sidelines. But while there have been many injuries this season the nature of this one made quite the headlines as the player had to be stretchered off the court.

A 36-year-old veteran pulls a WNBA game to a halt

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The Washington Mystic’s 36-year-old veteran Kristi Toliver recently suffered a major setback as she was taken off the court due to a nasty injury. Dealt during a game against the LA Sparks, the 2x WNBA champion went down in the first quarter as she succumbed to a non-contact injury.

via Imago

This took place at the end of the quarter as Toliver tried to carry the ball forward with 4 seconds on the clock. In an effort to free up some space the guard was seen attempting a crossover before falling to the ground in grimacing pain.

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Taking a closer look, one could notice Kristi clutching her right patella as it was evident that her footing had caused some serious strain to her knee. Having missed a big chunk of games with injuries in the past two seasons, the timing of this one is quite unfortunate.

Many of Toliver’s teammates were seen huddling around her as they tried to grasp the details of what had happened. Tears gushed down the cheeks of many as the veteran was then stretchered off the court, to a rousing ovation by fans and players alike, nonetheless.

Before the freak injury that saw many players break down in horror, the Mystics were leading the Sparks with a score of 21-19.

Teammates in shock as injury derails momentum

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Although not a significant lead, the momentum they had mustered up was all lost when the 3x WNBA All-Star went down with the injury. With most Washington players clearly shaken up, the Sparks then upped the ante as they beat the Mystics with a score of 72-34.

Speaking about the incident after the game, teammate and guard Brittney Skyes spoke on the injury as she explained the repercussion of it on the team, elaborating the consequence to ESPN. She stated, “We literally could not huddle and pray, like we tried to pray, and we barely could make it through the prayer because of how hurt we were.”

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With Toliver suffering major setbacks in the past few years, is it time that she switched her attention elsewhere? Having been a part of the Dallas Mavericks coaching set up since 2021, it is about time that the veteran stepped up into another role. Billionaire owner Mark Cuban recently announced a massive WNBA investment and Kristi could well be the face of the project.

Do you think it’s time for a career change or could the former NCAA champion make a comeback? Let us know in the comments below!

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Written by:

Arian Kashyap

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Arian Kashyap is an NBA Writer at EssentiallySports. He has college degrees in Physical Education and Sport Sciences and has been writing since 2019. He actively follows the NBA, and though he is a Miami Heat fan, Arian likes to provide all NBA lovers with captivating content that also helps educate his readers.
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Edited by:

Aayush Kapoor

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