Sabrina Ionescu makes long-awaited return to the WNBA court

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Sabrina Ionescu makes long-awaited return to the WNBA court originally appeared on NBC Sports Northwest

Welcome back, Queen. 

It had been 287 days since Sabrina Ionescu last played in a basketball game.

The No.1 overall pick in the 2020 WNBA Draft, Ionescu entered the league to a ton of fanfare. 

She did not disappoint, dropping 33 points in just the second game of her career. Things were looking up for the young New York Liberty star, but it all came screeching to a halt on July 31, 2020. 

In the third game of her career, Ionescu severely rolled her ankle. She left the game that night and would not return to action in the "Wubble."

Now fully healed, and playing in front of New York fans for the first time, Ionescu was ready to re-introduce herself to the WNBA. 

You knew she was going to have a heck of a game when she showed up to the arena honoring her close friend and recent Basketball Hall of Fame inductee, the late, great Kobe Bryant.

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Ionescu showed no signs of rust, getting the action going early. Buckets, rebounds, assists - Ionescu was doing all the things Oregon fans have came to love over the years. 

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Midway through the third quarter Ionescu already had a double-double with 10 points and 10 assists, the first double-double of her career... and it didn't end there. 

Tied at 87 and with five seconds left in the game, New York had one final chance at victory. Ionescu stepped up to the plate and drained the game-winning three with 0.4 remaining. The shot was absolutely incredible. 

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At night's end, the Liberty picked up the 90-87 victory over the Indiana Fever and Ionescu notched 25 points, 11 assists, and six rebounds, just four rebounds shy of recording the first triple-double of her career. 

Ionescu's 11 assists were impressive, too. She ended just two dimes shy of tying Liberty team record for assists in a game - A record that has stood since 1998 when Teresa Weatherspoon dished out 13 assists against the Los Angeles Sparks.

Needless to say, it was a great season debut for the Oregon legend.

Ionescu and the Liberty return to action on Sunday with a rematch against the Fever.