Angel Reese

Getty Angel Reese during an April 1 NCAA game.

Angel Reese spoke with reporters as part of her May 8 media day with the Chicago Sky.

At one point, Reese was asked whether she has any stories about Chicago head coach Teresa Weatherspoon helping her feel welcome with the Sky.

“My first conversation with her, during the draft process, I knew I wanted to come to Chicago,” Reese said, per Chicago State of Mind Sports. “Immediately. Like, I felt understood, I felt loved.”

“We had a conversation on the phone where it felt like she was a mom,” Reese continued about Weatherspoon. “I knew I will always be good with her. She will always be there for me through everything.

“Just being able to have somebody that understands me as a Black woman, that looks like me,” the former LSU star said. “Who knows what I’ve been through, and understands me from that perspective.”

The “Chi Barbie” had a Black male head coach named Jerome Shelton during her high school years. She then went to the University of Maryland, and played under Brenda Frese, a white woman.

After Reese transferred to LSU in May 2022, her head coach became Kim Mulkey, another white woman.

Therefore, Weatherspoon is the first Black woman to be Reese’s head coach since at least before high school.

The 2024 WNBA Draft’s No. 7 overall pick also compared Mulkey and Weatherspoon during media day.

“I love coach [Weather]spoon, she’s kind of like coach Mulkey, Reese said. “You have to have thick skin. You also have to be willing to be coached by her.”

Reese’s fantastic performance on May 7 proves that she thrives under the tough love Weatherspoon provides.

Weatherspoon Let Reese Leave Practice Early For The Met Gala

While Weatherspoon might force her players to have thick skin, she also understands when to let them shine.

The Chicago Tribune’s Julia Poe reported on May 6 that Reese skipped a portion of the Sky’s practice that day in order to attend the 2024 Met Gala.

Poe also spoke with Weatherspoon, who explained why she gave her pupil permission to miss practice for the event (which also fell on her birthday).

“There were things that were in place for them that we thought were very important for them to be part of,” Weatherspoon said about Reese and fellow rookie Kamilla Cardoso leaving practice early. “That’s something they earned and that’s never something we’d ever take away.”

The trust Weatherspoon showed her rookie paid dividends on May 7. When her Chicago Sky took on the New York Liberty, Reese scored 13 points, grabbed 5 rebounds, and often looked like the best player on the court.

Weatherspoon’s Coaching Credentials

Teresa Weatherspoon was hired to become the Chicago Sky’s head coach on October 12, 2023.

Prior to that hire, Weatherspoon had spent four seasons as an assistant coach for the New Orleans Pelicans.

According to ESPN, Weatherspoon was a candidate to become the NBA’s first female head coach when former Pelicans head coach Stan Van Gundy was fired at the end of the 2023 NBA season. Although New Orleans hired Phoenix Suns assistant Willie Green instead.