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Caitlin Clark altercation highlights tough transition to the pros

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Caitlin Clark altercation highlights tough transition to the pros

The altercation on Saturday highlighted the harsh reality of transitioning from NCAA to WNBA play, something veteran star Diana Taurasi had warned about during the NCAA tournament.

 

Taurasi cautioned that new players would face a tough adjustment period as they moved from playing against college athletes to seasoned professionals.

Clark’s latest confrontation occurred during the Fever’s narrow 71-70 victory over the Sky. In the third quarter, Carter appeared to call Clark a derogatory term before delivering a hard shoulder check. Initially ruled a common foul, the WNBA later upgraded it to a flagrant one.

Coach Sides and Fever General Manager Lin Dunn have both urged the league to address the aggressive play targeting Clark.

“There’s a difference between tough defense and unnecessary — targeting actions! It needs to stop! The league needs to ‘cleanup’ the crap! That’s NOT who this league is!!” Dunn wrote on social media.

The WNBA has confirmed that Carter’s foul was upgraded under a rule that penalizes unnecessary contact, and the Sky were fined for failing to ensure player compliance with media policies. The incident highlights the physical nature of the WNBA, something that is not new to the league. Angel Reese, another rookie, experienced similar treatment in a game against the Connecticut Sun when Alyssa Thomas grabbed her by the neck and threw her to the floor, resulting in a flagrant two foul and Thomas’s ejection.

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