WNBA clears air on prioritizing Caitlin Clark

WNBA clears air on prioritizing Caitlin Clark’s preseason debut over Angel Reese’s

The debut of Caitlin Clark is one of the most highly anticipated games in the WNBA this season. But aside from Clark, another rookie is expected to make her preseason debut tonight, Angel Reese. Unfortunately, the game between the Chicago Sky and Minnesota Lynx won’t be available on TV.

Both Clark and Reese will suit up for their respective teams and show off in the preseason. But many have called out the league for allegedly prioritizing the debut of the top pick. The Indiana Fever will take on the Dallas Wings tonight and fans will get to watch the game on TV and the WNBA League Pass.

With that, the fans have criticized the league for this issue. But they cleared the air on social media earlier. According to the league, Bally Sports of Minnesota has scheduled an MLB game for the timeslot of Reese’s preseason debut.

They clarified that they do not have control over the game not being available for fans on TV. At the end of their statement, the league assured fans that all games would be available in the league pass.

With Clark and Reese being two of the best college players as of late, it’s no surprise that both of them have garnered attention. There are significant expectations for both rookies as they start their professional careers.

WNBA rookie adjusting to commercial flights

Fans caught sight of Clark at Dallas Fort Worth International Airport with her teammates on Thursday. This was in preparation for the team’s preseason game against the Wings. The viewers immediately pointed out how the WNBA wasn’t flying the team on a charter flight.

The issue of the league not having charter flights for teams resurfaced after this. During her media availability, Clark commented on it and mentioned that it’ll take time for her to adjust to flying commercial.

“It’ll definitely be an adjustment, but it is what it is,” Clark said.

“It’s not like we’re the odd man out here. Everybody has to navigate it and I think it’s going to cause some problems, maybe, because the popularity of our league is continuing to grow and having to navigate travel with that.”

The issue of the teams in the league not having a charter flight has been around for some time. Fans have pointed out that there could be safety issues that the players could face. For the Fever, general manager Lin Dunn assured fans that the team has security measures in place.

According to Fox News, the league spent $4 million on charter flights during the playoffs last year. This also included back-to-back games that happened during the regular season. Commissioner Cathy Engelbert shared before the 2024 draft that the league would do the same this season.