Angel Reese to return for LSU after 4-game absence

reese kim


LSU star forward Angel Reese, who has missed four games for undisclosed reasons, is rejoining the No. 7 Tigers in advance of their matchup with ninth-ranked Virginia Tech on Thursday night.

Reese had foreshadowed her return on social media when she posted a photo of herself inside LSU’s basketball stadium, the Pete Maravich Assembly Center.  LSU coach Kim Mulkey has declined to go into detail about why Reese was not with the team for much of the past two weeks beyond saying it stemmed from unspecified “locker room issues.”


Mulkey said Wednesday that Reese will play but wouldn’t say whether she would be starting or coming off the bench.  Reese, who is one of the most popular and commercially successful players in her sport, missed games at Southeastern Louisiana and against Texas Southern in Baton Rouge before also not accompanying the team to the Cayman Islands for a holiday tournament. LSU defeated Niagara and Virginia in the Cayman Islands Classic last weekend.

Reese also was benched for the second half of a victory over Kent State on Nov. 14.  The Tigers (7-1) won all of the games Reese missed, most of them by a wide margin, and have not lost since dropping their opener in Las Vegas to then-No. 20 Colorado, which has since risen to No. 3.

Reese started LSU’s first four games, averaging 17 points and 10.3 rebounds as the Tigers went 3-1.  Mulkey, a four-time national championship-winning coach who is in the Hall of Fame, has defended her decision to hold back specifics about the nature of Reese’s absence, saying it was an internal team matter about which the public didn’t need to know.


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