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Liz Cambage gets medical exemption from WNBA season, won't play this year

Las Vegas Aces star Liz Cambage will receive her full salary for the WNBA season after the league granted her a medical exemption, coach Bill Laimbeer told ESPN on Wednesday.

Laimbeer reportedly said that Cambage wanted to play this season, but “fell severely ill” while playing in China last winter and was ruled a high-risk player by the Aces’ team doctor in June. The WNBA reportedly opted to not challenge that designation.

Cambage’s agent had previously said the player would sit out the season due to health risks, but the exemption now allows her to receive her six-figure salary. Cambage has previously speculated she might have contracted the coronavirus, per ESPN:

"I actually was sick in hospital, and I honestly think I had corona," Cambage told The Herald Sun in Australia. "'I was so weak, I couldn't walk, I was in a wheelchair. I had pneumonia. I think I had it before it was a global thing."

Cambage joins a group of players that includes Washington Mystics center Tina Charles, Phoenix Mercury forward Jessica Breland and New York Liberty guard Asia Durr in receiving a medical exemption. Curiously, Mystics star Elena Delle Donne did not receive an exemption despite a reported recommendation from her personal and team physicians.

Losing Cambage is an obvious blow for the Aces, who were considered title contenders heading into the WNBA season. In her first season with the team last year, the Australian posted 15.9 points and 8.2 rebounds per game.

ATLANTA, GA  SEPTEMBER 05: Las Vegas' Liz Cambage (8) shoots a free throw during the WNBA game between the Las Vegas Aces and the Atlanta Dream on September 5th, 2019 at State Farm Arena in Atlanta, GA. (Photo by Rich von Biberstein/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
Liz Cambage has received a WNBA exemption. (Photo by Rich von Biberstein/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

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