WNBA: Elite rookies in spotlight as Fever host Sky

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Three of the top seven picks from the 2024 WNBA Draft will take the court when the Chicago Sky visit the Indiana Fever on Saturday afternoon in Indianapolis.

Not only will it mark the first professional meeting between Caitlin Clark and Angel Reese after two NCAA Tournament showdowns, but No. 3 pick Kamilla Cardoso is expected to make her WNBA debut for Chicago (3-3).

The two-time national champion at South Carolina has had her rookie campaign delayed by a shoulder injury, but the Sky confirmed Cardoso is on track to play Saturday.

As for Reese and Clark, they reunite after a pair of duels in their days at LSU and Iowa, respectively. LSU took down Iowa in the 2023 national title game, with Reese famously sending a John Cena “can’t see me” gesture Clark’s way. Clark got her revenge in the Elite Eight of the 2024 NCAA Tournament with 41 points and 12 assists in a Hawkeyes victory.

Reese, the seventh pick, has averaged 11.0 points and 8.2 rebounds in six starts for the Sky.

Clark, the top overall pick, leads the Fever (1-8) with 17.6 points and 6.6 assists per game.

Both rookies have made waves with their play early on — and with the attention they’ve garnered, from fans and opponents alike. In one case, Reese was knocked to the floor by Connecticut’s Alyssa Thomas during a rebound attempt, with her hand touching Reese’s neck.

“I’m a basketball player. They don’t give a damn if I’m a rookie. I want them to come at me every day,” Reese said afterward. “I want them to come at everybody. I mean, they’re not supposed to be nice to me. I hope you know that they’re not supposed to be nice to me or lay down because I’m Angel Reese or because I’m a rookie.”

Clark, meanwhile, has been face-guarded and double-teamed, and still went for 30 points on Tuesday in a loss to Los Angeles.

In Indiana’s latest loss, 103-88 to Seattle on Thursday, Clark got her third technical foul of the season for jawing with an opponent. Fever coach Christie Sides also got T’d up for complaining to a referee for Clark not drawing a foul on a different play.

“We’re spending too much time talking to the officials,” Sides said. “We’ve got to just play our game and let them do their job and not put it in their hands to make decisions that ultimately hurt us.”

–Field Level Media

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