Seattle Storm center Lauren Jackson Monday underwent emergency surgery to repair a torn meniscus in her right knee as well as her left Achilles tendon. Jackson, 32, will sit out the 2014 season, according to a statement released Wednesday by the team. It will be the second season in a row Jackson has missed because of injuries.
Jackson didn’t play in 2013 following surgery to fix a chronic hamstring injury after playing for the Australian national team in the 2012 Summer Olympics.
Her latest setback came while playing for Heilonghjiang, a pro team in China’s Harbin province. The soonest Jackson can resume her career WNBA will be 2015, though she plans join Australia’s national team in late September for the world championships in Turkey. Her rehab program is estimated to take four months.
“I’m so sad that I can’t play this year in Seattle,” Jackson said. “This injury took me by surprise and I’m just coming to grips with the severity of it. I want to finish my career in Seattle and I’m going to be as healthy as possible to do that.”
Jackson, a three-time MVP and seven-time All-Star, helped lead the Storm to titles in 2004 and 2010, but her last three seasons were marred by injuries. Storm coach and general manager Brian Agler said the team will move on without her in the short term.
“We all want Lauren healthy and to compete again for the Storm,” Agler said. “Until then, we will move forward, prepare for the 2014 season and work to put the Storm in position to compete for a championship.”