Delle Donne, Atkins question marks for Game 3 of WNBA Finals


Washington Mystics forward Elena Delle Donne stands on the court in the first half of Game 2 of basketball’s WNBA Finals against the Connecticut Sun, Tuesday, Oct. 1, 2019, in Washington. (AP Photo/Nick Wass)

UNCASVILLE, Conn. (AP) — Washington Mystics coach Mike Thibault says his team is preparing to play Game 3 of the WNBA Finals without league MVP Elena Delle Donne and guard Ariel Atkins.

The 6-foot-5 Delle Donne is suffering from a herniated disk that is pinching a nerve in her back. She left Game 2 with back spasms and both she and Atkins are listed as questionable for Sunday’s Game 3.

Thibault says Atkins, who had 21 points in the Mystics’ Game 1 win, suffered back spasms on Thursday night. Thibault says she simply bent down and could not stand up again.

Both players were receiving treatment while their teammates practiced on Saturday.

The Mystics lost home-court advantage in a 99-87 defeat to the Connecticut Sun on Tuesday.

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