The defending women’s professional basketball champion Asan Woori Bank has turned into an injury ward.
Even before the start of the season, several key players were sidelined with injuries, including transfer Yoo Seung-hee (29), who was effectively declared out for the season.
According to Woori Bank on Monday, Yoo was recently diagnosed with a torn ACL in his right knee. He collapsed while holding his knee in the opening game against Busan BNK (74-70 win) on May 5. Yoo left the court with the knee injury around 4:10 of the third quarter. There was no collision with an opponent. “That’s where the injury was,” said Woori Bank head coach Lee Sat-woo, “and I’m worried because big injuries often happen alone. (After Yoo Seung-hee’s injury), I was also distraught. I couldn’t concentrate on the game,” he sighed.
Yoo Seung-hee is expected to go under the knife in the near future. A torn ACL is a serious injury that requires at least six months to a year to recover from, so it is not expected that he will be able to return this season.
Yoo Seung-hee left Shinhan Bank in Incheon in a trade before the start of the season and switched to a Woori uniform. In a survey of players, fans, and media representatives from the six clubs before the start of the season, she was voted the “most anticipated transfer”.
In particular, she was seen as a key player who could fill the void left by Park Hye-jin’s injury at the beginning of the season, when she was sidelined with a more serious injury. It’s especially unfortunate because it’s the same area where Yoo Seung-hee suffered two major injuries.
Woori Bank’s path to the top of the standings will not be easy. Park Hye-jin is not yet fit to play, and Lee Myung-kwan (plantar) and Kim Eun-sun (knee) are still rehabbing. Go Ara, who is playing, also has a knee problem.
In the end, all the pressure was on Kim Dan-bi and Park Ji-hyun, who were the mainstays of last season’s combined championship. The veteran Kim recorded a triple-double (32 points, 17 rebounds, 10 assists) in the opening game, playing 42:46 including 안전놀이터 overtime, but it will be impossible for her to keep the same pace the rest of the way. New hope must emerge to back up Kim Dan-bi and Park Ji-hyeon to keep their championship dreams alive.
“This year is a turning point in my coaching life. It’s a turning point in my coaching life, and I have to believe in athletes who don’t normally exercise,” Wee said.