Diana Taurasi, Who Said 'Reality Is Coming' for Caitlin Clark, Gets Roasted by Fans After Missing All-Star List


Phoenix Mercury star Diana Taurasi is a WNBA legend, so when she said that “reality is coming” for rookie sensation Caitlin Clark, people took notice.

Unfortunately, as the season progresses, reality has come — and darned if it that comment didn’t come back and bite Taurasi hard.

According to Athlon Sports, Clark, the No. 1 pick in this year’s WNBA Draft, is the second-leading vote getter in the WNBA All-Star Game balloting, which is to be played in Phoenix, Arizona — Taurasi’s home turf.

Taurasi did not even make the top ten. Or, for that matter, the top 30.

Now, granted, sports isn’t a popularity contest and Clark isn’t in the running for league MVP or anything like that. However, she was the second vote-getter behind two-time league MVP A’Ja Wilson of the Las Vegas Aces, the reigning champion.

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Third was another Indiana Fever player, Clark’s teammate Aliyah Boston, who was last year’s Rookie of the Year. Breanna Stewart of the New York Liberty was fourth, Irike Ogunbowale of the Dallas Wings was fifth.

Angel Reese, Clark’s fellow rookie and bête noire, was seventh.

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Granted, fan sentiment sometimes doesn’t equal the reality of performance. Consider that five Fever players were in the top 30 in All-Star Game voting; while Clark’s team has managed to climb back from an 0-5 start to a 7-10 record as of Friday, nobody is pegging them as a WNBA colossus.

However, it’s another sign that Taurasi’s comment — made to ESPN’s Scott Van Pelt several months ago, before Clark began playing — will come back to haunt her.

“Look, SVP. Reality is coming. There’s levels to this thing. And that’s just life, we all went through it,” former UConn star Taurasi said in April, according to the Hartford Courant.

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“You see it on the NBA side, and you’re going to see it on this side. You look superhuman playing against 18-year-olds, but you’re going to come with some grown women that have been playing professional basketball for a long time.

“Not saying that it’s not going to translate, because when you’re great at what you do, you’re just going to get better. But there is going to be a transition period, where you’re just going to have to give yourself grace as a rookie, and it might take a little bit longer for some people.”

Unfortunately, yes, reality does come — and that reality is that a new generation of WNBA stars are set to replace Taurasi and Co., who have done well for themselves on the court but haven’t exactly built the league’s fanbase.

Taurasi, who’s been in the league for 20 years now, is currently averaging 16.9 points per game, 5.0 rebounds and 2.1 assists. This is slightly below her career averages — 19.0 points per game, 3.9 rebounds, 4.2 assists — but not dramatically. It’s also her best season, points-wise, since 2020.

Clark, 17 games into her rookie year, is averaging 16.2 points per game, 5.4 rebounds and 6.2 assists.

So who, exactly, is getting hit by reality here? Fans roasted Taurasi not just for the comment for the fact she’s on the U.S. Olympic squad and Clark is not:

Of course, this is why Clark is such a story to begin with. Yes, she’s clearly got generational talent — and sports fans are sitting up and paying attention. But are WNBA players and supporters happy? No, shockingly, they’re not.

For years, we’ve been told as sports fans that our refusal to embrace the WNBA was a sign of blatant sexism in sports. And then we did start paying attention — and the league’s supporters were still salty. It turns out our support wasn’t supposed to be based on whether the game was any good or not. We were making a statement.

And now fans are making a statement. Reality hurts, Diana.

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C. Douglas Golden is a writer who splits his time between the United States and Southeast Asia. Specializing in political commentary and world affairs, he's written for Conservative Tribune and The Western Journal since 2014.
C. Douglas Golden is a writer who splits his time between the United States and Southeast Asia. Specializing in political commentary and world affairs, he's written for Conservative Tribune and The Western Journal since 2014. Aside from politics, he enjoys spending time with his wife, literature (especially British comic novels and modern Japanese lit), indie rock, coffee, Formula One and football (of both American and world varieties).
Morristown, New Jersey
Catholic University of America
Languages Spoken
English, Spanish
Topics of Expertise
American Politics, World Politics, Culture