09 Jan

UConn guard Azzi Fudd out for remainder of the season with knee injury

UConn junior guard Azzi Fudd will miss the remaining 2023-24 season after suffering a medial meniscal tear and an ACL tear in her right knee, the program announced on Wednesday.

“We’re all just so upset for Azzi. She worked hard to be healthy for this season, and it’s unfortunate when you put in a lot of hard work and have a setback like this,” head coach Geno Auriemma said in a statement. “Azzi loves the game and works tirelessly. I’m confident she’ll rehab with the same work ethic and come back better than ever.

“We’ll obviously miss her presence on the court, but Azzi will continue to be a great teammate and important part of this team this season. Our program will support Azzi through her recovery however we can,” Auriemma said.

After Paige Bueckers, the 2021 Naismith Women’s Player of the Year, tore her ACL in the summer of 2022, Fudd stepped up and was “far and away, 100% the best player on the floor,” according to Auriemma. However, she suffered a knee injury and only played 15 games in her sophomore campaign.

The UConn locker room has been plagued by injuries for the past few seasons. In January, the team was forced to postpone a game against DePaul because the Huskies did not have the minimum seven healthy players available. Fudd was ready to bounce back this season along with Bueckers, but she suffered her ACL tear during practice on Nov. 14. Auriemma said it was a non-contact injury.

“The way they all do, honest to God, the way they all do,” Auriemma said while describing what happened. “I’m standing here, she’s over here. Takes the ball, dribbles, stops, shoots it, and says ‘hmm that felt funny.’ And walks to the training room… Like most all the other ones that have happened. Nobody near them, just random stuff.”

Fudd will have surgery at UConn Health at a later date, the team said.

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