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Watch: Caitlin Clark Drops Bomb on Media, Mocks 'Rivalry' with Angel Reese's Team

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Sunday’s game between the WNBA’s Indiana Fever and Chicago Sky may be one of the most watched WNBA games of all time, if just because of the fact it involves Caitlin Clark, Angel Reese and a bit of bad blood.

For the past few weeks, after a hard foul on Clark from the Sky’s Chennedy Carter — and video footage showing Reese celebrating the foul on the sideline — the stakes have ramped up. Reese has thrown shade on Clark and said, “I know I’ll go down in history.”  She’s gone after the media after a considerable Sky losing streak.

As for Clark, she has a bit of a roast for her fellow rookie: What rivalry?

At a news conference after the Fever won their fourth straight game on Friday — and looking to take on Reese’s struggling Sky on Sunday — she said dropped what amounted to a bomb on the media narrative of the WNBA season so far.

“I’m pretty sure that the only people who view this as a rivalry is all of you,” Clark told reporters after the 7-10 Fever dispatched the Atlanta Dream, 91-79.

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It was an answer that took even Fever coach Christie Sides and Fever forward Nalyssa Smith by obvious surprise.

“For us, it’s just a game of basketball. That’s what it is,” Clark continued. “If it’s going to help move the game forward then absolutely. That’s amazing. That’s what it should be. People can talk about it.

“We’re excited. We have to wipe this [the Atlanta win], learn from it. We travel tonight, get there, practice, prep and then play the next day at 4 p.m. Like I said, if that’s what is going to help the game move forward then absolutely [call it a rivalry],” she added.

The game — which tips off at 3 p.m., according to NBC Sports — is one of the hottest tickets in recent memory for a contest featuring two sub-.500 teams, with the Sky sitting at 5-9 after a win against the Dallas Wings on Thursday.

According to the U.K. Daily Mail, tickets for the matchup were starting at $230 on resale site StubHub, leading Clark to joke why they weren’t moving the matchup to Chicago’s larger basketball venue. (Saturday night Eastern Time, single-ticket sales on StubHub started at $146.)

“I saw the ticket prices, I guess the only thing is I’m surprised we aren’t playing at the United Center,” she said. (Alas, rapper Russ is playing the venue, so the game will go down at the Wintrust Arena.)

However, aside from the pro forma quotes about it being good for the game of basketball, Clark’s post-game comments were pretty harsh shade when you consider the lengths to which Reese has been trying to make the rivalry happen.

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Despite the fact that Reese was the No. 7 pick compared to Clark’s No. 1 in the WNBA Draft, the two had been bitter rivals in college and Reese seemed to get off to the better start in the pros.

Then came June 1 and the viral foul heard ’round the sports world, in which Reese’s Sky teammate Chennedy Carter fouled Clark off the ball for no particularly good strategic reason — and Reese seemed to cheer.

Reese went on to defend the foul in an interview during a practice the following week, saying her game against Clark in the NCAA Women’s National Championship Game in 2023 “is where it all started” and she’s “been dealing with this for two years now.”

“And understanding, yeah, negative things have probably been said about me, but honestly, I’ll take that because look where women’s basketball is,” she said.

“People are talking about women’s basketball, but you never would think that people would be talking about women’s basketball. People are pulling up to games, we got celebrities coming to games, sold out arenas, just because of one single game,” Reese said, again referencing the 2023 women’s NCAA National Championship final between LSU and Iowa.

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“And just looking at that, I’ll take that role. I’ll take the ‘bad guy’ role, and I’ll continue to take that on and be that for my teammates. And I know I’ll go down in history,” she added. “I’ll look back in 20 years and be like, ‘the reason why we watching women’s basketball is not just because of one person, it’s because of me, too,’ and I want y’all to realize that.”

However, while Reese initially appeared to be neck-and-neck with Clark for Rookie of the Year honors, Clark has since been running away with it on betting markets, with the Fever guard a -900 favorite with Reese at +1000, according to Fox Sports. (To put that into non-bettor’s terms: a $10 bet on Clark would win you $11.11. whereas a $10 bet on Reese would win you $110.)

Part of that can be attributed to Clark’s solidly improving numbers, a trend that repeated itself in the Fever’s win on Friday. She managed 16 points, seven assists and four rebounds, as well as hitting four for eight from three-point land.

Moreover, both teams seem to be going different directions with different levels of talent. The Fever, who don’t have much beyond Clark and last year’s No. 1 pick and Rookie of the Year Aliyah Boston, started 0-5 but are now 7-10. The Sky, meanwhile, had two top rookies in Reese and Kamilla Cardoso, plus a veteran presence in guards Carter and Marina Mabrey.

Yet, after a 3-3 start, the team now finds itself 5-9 and just pulling itself out of an embarrassing skid with the win against the Wings on Thursday.

So, yes — if it’s great for the game, that’s superb. But, at least for the moment, Clark is right: What rivalry, indeed?


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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).
Birthplace
Morristown, New Jersey
Education
Catholic University of America
Languages Spoken
English, Spanish
Topics of Expertise
American Politics, World Politics, Culture




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