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Jackson’s ankle better, may play this weekend

Associated Press

Seattle star Lauren Jackson was still in pain Wednesday, but her sprained right ankle had improved enough that she may play this weekend.

Storm coach Anne Donovan was hopeful the Australian star can play against visiting Detroit on Saturday.

Asked how long she expects to be sidelined, Jackson said, “Not long. I’ll be back.”

Jackson, the WNBA’s Most Valuable Player in 2003, was injured with 7:19 remaining in Tuesday’s win over New York. She jammed her foot into the court after bumping into an opposing player from behind.

A member of the Australian Olympic team in Athens last summer, Jackson ranks third in the league with a 17.7 scoring average.

Before the season, Jackson had surgery on the same joint, an operation that Donovan said “cleaned out a lot of garbage in there” and strengthened the ankle.

“If she hadn’t done the surgery, who knows how she would have responded to this?” Donovan asked.

She didn’t practice Wednesday, and Donovan is giving the Storm a day off today.

“It’s very painful for her,” Donovan said. “She’s got confidence in our medical staff that we’re going to get her through it, but she did it pretty good. It’s all aspects of the ankle that are sprained.”

Though Seattle has won three straight games, last year’s WNBA champions have struggled to incorporate new players. Point guard Sue Bird broke her nose and missed four games last month.

Shock 66, Sun 57: At Auburn Hills, Mich., reserve Chandi Jones had 14 points, and Cheryl Ford added 12 points and 12 rebounds as Detroit beat Connecticut. Detroit had lost 10 of 13 since starting the season with four wins. Connecticut had its three-game winning streak snapped and lost at Detroit for the second time this season.

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