Asjha Jones to miss entire 2013 Sun season

Connecticut Sun forward Asjha Jones will miss the entire 2013 WNBA season while she recovers from a series of injuries.
Buy Photo Sean D. Elliot/The Day Connecticut Sun forward Asjha Jones will miss the entire 2013 WNBA season while she recovers from a series of injuries.

Mohegan - Asjha Jones has decided to take the summer off and will not play for the Connecticut Sun this season.

Jones cited injuries in a team press release as the reason for her sabbatical.

"I am sorry to announce that I will miss the 2013 WNBA season due to injuries," Jones said. "I do not feel like I would be fit and ready to play this summer, and I did not think that would be fair to coach (Anne) Donovan or to the Connecticut Sun organization, which has treated me so well over the past nine seasons.

"I wish the team a great season in 2013 and look forward to returning in 2014."

Jones, who turns 33 in August, will not occupy a roster spot.

The 6-foot-3 Jones missed 14 regular season games last year with a strained Achilles tendon. She returned to average 13.6 points and 6.4 rebounds in five playoff games, then spent the summer as a member of the United States Olympic team, which won the gold medal in London. Jones was one of six former UConn players on the U.S. roster and played for her former coach Geno Auriemma.

Connecticut may have lost a second player for the season as forward Danielle McCray was injured Thursday playing for Italy's Famila Schio. Sun vice president and general manager Chris Sienko said that she'll have an MRI today.

McCray averaged 13.9 minutes in 28 regular season games last season.

Jones' departure leaves Mistie Mims and Kelsey Griffin as the Sun's remaining power forwards. It is unclear whether Sandrine Gruda, a member of France's Olympic team who has played for the Sun in previous seasons, will play here this summer.

Sienko said Thursday that Gruda will not make a decision about returning to the Sun until the conclusion of the European Championships which end June 30.

Sienko said the same applies to Alba Torrens, a promising 6-3 guard/forward who missed time last year with a knee injury.

Jones was acquired from the Washington Mystics in exchange for a first-round pick in the 2004 WNBA Draft and has played nine seasons for Connecticut.

"It's disappointing to hear that Asjha will not be back with the team this season," first-year coach Anne Donovan said through a team press release.

"But I am confident in the ability of the players we do have returning, and I am looking forward to a great year."

m.dimauro@theday.com

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