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Lynx star Collier nears return

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For the first time since giving birth to daughter Mila on May 25, Napheesa Collier took full part in practice with the Lynx on Saturday.

If all goes well in the coming days, there is a very good chance Collier will be able to fulfill her desire to take the court with center Sylvia Fowles in Fowles' last season. In fact, there is an outside chance Collier's debut could come Wednesday at Phoenix.

"She wants to," Lynx coach Cheryl Reeve said of Collier, who worked with the second unit Saturday. "And I want to do that for her. But a lot depends on how things go."

Colllier's workouts have ramped up late. On the road with the team during a recently completed road trip, Collier ran stairs. She worked with head athletic trainer Chuck Barta in rather grueling workouts. On Friday, a day off for the team, Collier came in and took part in an intense scrimmage with a team of male players the Lynx brought in.

Collier practiced with the team Saturday, will take part in Sunday's shootaround before the game with Atlanta at Target Center and then will do another up-tempo workout with the male practice players Monday.

She will definitely not play Sunday. "No, she's not ready for that," Reeve said. "That wouldn't be right. Wednesday, if everything goes well, we'll see how her body is feeling, just see where she's at."

Collier, 25, is the 2019 WNBA Rookie of the Year, a two-time All-Star forward and was Fowles' teammate on the Team USA team that won Olympic gold last year in Tokyo. She has said since giving birth her goal was to get back on the floor with Fowles, her close friend, before Fowles' 15-year career comes to an end.

The Lynx have four games remaining on their schedule, two at home. The Lynx play host to Seattle at Target Center Friday in Fowles' final regular season home game.

Reach Tribune sports editor Dave Selvig at (701) 250-8246 or david.selvig@bismarcktribune.com

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