“You Look Super Human Playing Against 18-Year-Olds”| While 19,000 Swarm To See Caitlin Clark Practice, WNBA Legend Diana Taurasi Sends Warning Shots

Win or lose Sunday’s NCAA Women’s Basketball championship game against South Carolina, Caitlin Clark has a daunting task ahead of her after the pomp and circumstance of the WNBA draft on April 15 passes and she begins her pro career as the hunted. 

19,000 Register To See Caitlin Clark Practice

The Clark Effect is undeniable. She’s even selling out her practices. On Saturday, Iowa had an open practice, and some 19,000 people registered to see it.

The more the media and women’s college basketball fans and the casual fan caught up in this shining moment for women’s hoops amplify Clark’s growing legend, the more the WNBA legends, who have paved the way for players like Clark, and still have skin in the game, are salivating for an opportunity to put her to the test. 

“Reality is coming,” WNBA legend Diana Taurasi warned, flanked by her former UConn teammate Sue Bird, said recently on their “Bird & Taurasi Show.” “There’s levels to this thing. … You look superhuman playing against some 18-year-olds, but you’re going to come play with some grown women that been playing professional basketball for a long time.

Diana Taurasi with a message for Caitlin Clark: “There’s levels to this.”

Taurasi’s comments come on the heels of former UConn star Breanna Stewart challenging the validity of Clark’s greatness if the Iowa guard is unable to close the deal on Sunday and win a title. 

Is Diana Taurasi Hating On Caitlin Clark?

You can’t say Taurasi is hating. The woman they call “White Mamba” is the WNBA’s all-time leading scorer with 10,108 points. To put that in perspective Tina Thompson is second with 7,488.

The Phoenix Mercury star was Caitlin Clark before Caitlin Clark when she was the first overall pick in the 2004 WNBA draft. The three-time WNBA champion with the Mercury (in 2007, 2009, and 2014), has a WNBA MVP award and two WNBA Finals MVP Awards.

For good measure, Taurasi is a five-time Olympic gold medalist (2004, 2008, 2012, 2016, and 2020) and with five WNBA scoring titles and three FIBA World Cups

So, all of these comments are more warnings for Clark to buckle up those bootstraps after her final college season. The WNBA isn’t going to be a cake walk. There are bigger stars who have put in the work and built the league with their bare hands to a point that all Clark has to do is be the real deal and life is great. She will have to earn it though. Not just on the court, but the respect of other players and teammates. 

Remember how all of the NBA players went at Lonzo Ball when he entered the NBA as a victim and benefactor of his dad LaVar’s hype train? Every night, another All-Star was trying to humiliate the rookie. That’s the kind of heat Clark should be prepared for.

WNBA Stars Gunning For Caitlin Clark

Tarausi and Stewart and all of the WNBA players who were sour that Ice Cube offered Clark a $5M deal to play in his 3-on-3 Big3 League know that Clark has game. But as Taurasi pointed out, nobody’s a teenage girl in the pros. Those are grown women who don’t have NIL deals but do have immense talent and play at a high level for all the marbles.  

There’s going to be an adjustment period. It’s up to Clark how long it takes for her to get in her groove with a new team and a new role in Indiana. 

“Not saying it’s not going to translate, because when you’re great at what you do you’re just going to get better,” Taurasi added for some clarification. “But there is going to be a transition period where you have to give yourself some grace as a rookie. It might take a little bit longer for some people.”

It probably won’t take long for Clark, who is also a deft passer, which will translate well at the next level. What we do know is that all of the top dawgs in the WNBA are waiting to get a crack on the chosen one to establish whether she’s really “the savior.” 

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