Is Caitlin Clark behind WNBA's new reputation? Angel Reese says it's greater than 'only one particular person'

Chicago Sky rookie Angel Reese had an announcement recreation Thursday in opposition to the New York Liberty, contributing 13 factors and 9 rebounds to her staff’s 90-81 win and going viral throughout the recreation for selecting the pocket of reigning WNBA MVP Brenna Stewart.

After the sport, Reese took to the social media platform X to make a unique sort of assertion.

“And that’s on getting a WIN in a packed [arena] not simply trigger of 1 participant on our constitution flight. #SKYTOWN,” the previous Louisiana State star wrote after her staff improved to 2-1 whereas dropping New York to 4-1.

The since-deleted submit appears to be a commentary on the notion that WNBA rookie Caitlin Clark of the Indiana Fever alone deserves the credit score for the current surge in reputation of ladies’s basketball and for the WNBA’s determination to make use of league-wide constitution flights for the primary time this season.

That concept got here up on Wednesday’s episode of LeBron James and JJ Redick‘s “Mind the Game” podcast.

“I don’t wish to name it hatred, however there’s undoubtedly, like, a dislike or a vitriol coming her method [from] different gamers,” Redick mentioned of Clark.

James mentioned: “The one factor that I really like that she’s bringing to her sport, extra individuals wish to watch. More individuals wish to tune in. I noticed for the primary time that they’d a chartered aircraft, for the primary time of their league historical past they flew personal. That ought to be celebrated in its personal proper. For anybody in sports activities that’s flown industrial or flown constitution, that ought to be celebrated. And it’s due to Caitlin Clark.

“Don’t get it twisted, don’t get it f–ed up. Caitlin Clark is the rationale why a whole lot of nice issues is gonna occur for the WNBA.”

On TNT’s protection of the NBA’s Western Conference finals Wednesday night time, Charles Barkley mentioned James was “100% proper” along with his feedback and referred to as out WNBA gamers who’re appearing “petty” towards Clark.

“Y’all ought to be thanking that woman for getting y’all … personal charters, all the cash and visibility she’s bringing to the WNBA,” Barkley mentioned. “Don’t be petty like dudes. Listen, what she’s achieved, give her her flowers.”

Before her recreation Thursday, Reese talked to reporters about the concept “only one particular person” is chargeable for the present success of the WNBA and listed plenty of gamers — herself and fellow Sky rookie Kamilla Cardoso and Sparks rookies Cameron Brink and Rickea Jackson — who’re additionally having a optimistic impression on the ladies’s recreation.

“It’s not only one particular person, I believe individuals don’t notice that [because] the narrative out there’s that only one particular person altering the sport. It’s a whole lot of us — me, Kamilla, there’s Cameron, Rickea. There’s so many nice gamers and it’s been lengthy overdue and simply with the ability to see that our impression has been capable of change the sport.

“I find it irresistible for us all and we’re simply going to proceed to maintain going.”

In her submit, Reese talked about the packed area for the Sky-Liberty recreation. There was undoubtedly a big crowd of greater than 12,000 followers at Barclays Center that night time, nevertheless it ought to be famous that greater than 17,700 had been there May 18 when the Liberty hosted Clark and the Fever.

“WNBA getting packed arenas is wonderful to see ! let’s simply discuss that!” former NBA star Dwight Howard wrote in response to Reese’s now-deleted submit.

Reese is averaging 12 factors, 8.7 rebounds and 1.3 assists. The WNBA famous on X that she is barely the third WNBA participant to have 15 or extra offensive rebounds after simply three video games, becoming a member of Natilie Williams and Yolanda Griffith, each of whom had been rookies in 1999.

Clark is averaging 17.8 factors, 4.6 rebounds and 5.8 assists for the 0-5 Fever, who play the Sparks on Friday night time at Arena.

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