Stanford grad Chiney Ogwumike will likely miss up to half of the Connecticut Suns' 2015 season as she rehabs following microfracture surgery a week ago.
The Hartford Courant reported Ogwumike had a small lesion in her articular cartilage and is expected to return sometime late in July. The Suns open their WNBA season on June 5.
"This is new territory for my family and I, but I am not one to shy away from challenges," Ogwumike told the Courant. "I have met every life challenge with an optimistic point of view, therefore this is an obstacle I know I will overcome. I have the best support system, both personally and professionally, so I know I will emerge from this experience a more confident and determined player."
Ogwumike was named the WNBA's Rookie of the Year after averaging 15.5 points and 8.5 rebounds in 31 games and leading all rookies in double-doubles with 13.
She joined Famila Wuber Schio in Italy in late August and was averaging 25.3 points and 13.1 rebounds.
Walter Lowe, the team doctor of the Houston Texans and Houston Rockets, performed the surgery.