Caitlin Clark Provides Classy Response to Missing U.S. Women's Olympic Basketball Team

Caitlin Clark says she's not disappointed in missing the U.S. Olympic women's basketball team roster. It gives her something to shoot for over the next four years. She also said she'll be "rooting for them to win gold."
Indiana Fever guard Caitlin Clark warms up
Indiana Fever guard Caitlin Clark warms up / Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports
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The United States Olympic women's basketball team roster was announced over the weekend, and Indiana Fever rookie Caitlin Clark's name was absent. Despite her incredible talent, the former Iowa standout and No. 1 overall pick in the 2024 WNBA Draft was left off the team.

As you can imagine, many were outraged that Clark wasn't included on this year's Olympic roster. It caused a lot of unneccessary drama on social media — as most things do when it comes to Clark's WNBA career.

The rookie, though, provided a thoughtful and classy response to being left off of this year's team.

"I'm excited for the girls that are on the team. I know it's the most competitive team in the world and I know it could've gone either way — me being on the team, me not being on the team," Clark said. "So, I'm excited for them. I'm gonna be rooting for them to win gold. I was a kid who grew up watching the Olympics, so, yeah, it'll be fun watching them."

This year's roster includes Napheesa Collier (Minnesota Lynx), Kahleah Copper (Phoenix Mercury), Chelsea Gray (Las Vegas Aces), Brittney Griner (Phoenix Mercury), Sabrina Ionescu (New York Liberty), Jewell Loyd (Seattle Storm), Kelsey Plum (Las Vegas Aces), Breanna Stewart (New York Liberty), Diana Taurasi (Phoenix Mercury), Alyssa Thomas (Connecticut Sun), A'ja Wilson (Las Vegas Aces), Jackie Young (Las Vegas Aces).

Say what you want about Clark being left off, but that's an absolutely loaded roster to send to Paris. And it's a decision that the rookie is fine with at this point in her career.

"Honestly, no disappointment. I think it just gives you something to work for. That's a dream. Hopefully, one day I can be there," Clark said. "I think it's just a little more motivation. You remember that. Hopefully in four years, when it comes back around I can be there."

If there's a positive from being left off the U.S. Olympic Team, it's that Clark will finally have some time to rest. Not only did she make the quick transition from the college game to the WNBA, she's also dealt with a media circus for the better part of three years.

Having some down time is going to be really nice for the high-profile rookie.

"Absolutely. It's gonna be really nice," she said. "I've loved competing every single second, but it's gonna be a great month for my body to get rest, get healthy and get a little time away from basketball and the craziness of everything that's been going on. Just find some peace and quiet for myself.

"But additionally, a great opportunity for us to work and get better. Great opportunity for myself to get in the weight room, to work on the court and get better at things that I maybe didn't have time going from college to the pro season."

Clark is averaging 16.8 points, 6.3 assists and 5.3 rebounds per game in her first season in Indiana. She was named the WNBA Rookie of the Month for May.


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Dustin Schutte

DUSTIN SCHUTTE