July 21, 2024

Following the Indiana Fever’s victory over the New York Liberty on Saturday afternoon, head coach Christie Sides was asked if she’d like to use the chance to make her case for Caitlin Clark as rookie of the year. Clark had just achieved the first rookie triple-double in WNBA history with the win.

“I’m always going to make a case for my player,” Sides told the audience. “First and foremost, she is the most competitive human being I’ve ever encountered. I genuinely think she reminds me of Diana Tuarasi. She strives to improve herself and contribute to the team’s success. [Clark] discovered a beat tonight. Our guys are improving their timing and harmony. She only wants to win.

“To me, she’s going to be my Rookie of the Year everyday,” she said.

Sides definitely did not comment on Chicago Sky forward Angel Reese, as the head coach was solely concerned with Clark. However, as the season nears its midpoint, Clark and Reese are the clear frontrunners for the award. There is also a lot of discussion online.

The Fever coach was later asked about Clark’s competitiveness in other areas. Sides joked that anything involving scoring triggered Clark’s competitive disposition. When Indiana holds its half-court shooting challenge to end workouts, Sides says Clark is constantly thinking about winning. Sides stated that trait spreads to other players.

On Friday, Katie Lou Samuelson made a half-court shot. Clark responded, “No, we’re not done here!”


Fever coach Christie Sides compares Caitlin Clark to WNBA great while  making case for Rookie of the Year | Fox News

WNBA ROY race is great for the league

If Caitlin Clark wins the award, it will be the third time since the 2015 WNBA season that a team has had back-to-back Rookie of the Year recipients. Jewell Loyd and Breanna Stewart of the Seattle Storm; Napheesa Collier and Crystal Dangerfield of the Minnesota Lynx; and potentially Aliyah Boston and Clark. Tamika Catchings was Indiana’s sole other recipient in 2002.

Angel Reese of Chicago equaled Candace Parker on Friday for the most consecutive double-doubles in league history with 12, scoring 27 points and grabbing 10 rebounds. The next day, on Saturday, Clark became the first rookie in WNBA history to record a triple-double, finishing with 19 points, 12 rebounds, and 13 assists to offset some of his inefficient 3-point shooting.

How about that? Both rookies are going for records on consecutive days. It all comes back to what everyone discovered when the Fever played in Chicago in June: with Clark and Reese, the league is in good hands.

Everyone seems to be talking about the Rookie of the Year race, aiming to outperform others in terms of what is the most valuable stat among players. It’s intriguing that they’re divided by both the frontcourt and the backcourt.

Obviously, Sides believes Clark has the advantage.

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