Home Entertainment Caitlin Clark, Angel Reese to make WNBA All-Star Game debuts: Full rosters

Caitlin Clark, Angel Reese to make WNBA All-Star Game debuts: Full rosters

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The 2024 WNBA All-Star Game rosters are set with Caitlin Clark and Angel Reese making their debuts in the annual showcase later this month.

Clark, the No. 1 pick by the Indiana Fever in this year’s WNBA Draft, received the most votes in the fan-voting portion of the balloting. Having already won Rookie of the Month in May, she is leading all first-year players in scoring (16.2 points per game), assists (6.9 per game), and is second league-wide in 3-pointers made (56).

On Tuesday, Reese, the No. 7 pick to the Chicago Sky, was named Rookie of the Month for June. This past weekend, she set a single-season WNBA record for consecutive double-doubles (10), and she led the WNBA in rebounding entering Tuesday night’s action. Like Clark, Reese finished in the top five of the fan vote.

The two rookies are the only two first-time participants in the exhibition, which is set for July 20 in Phoenix.

“I’m just so happy. I know the work I put in,” Reese said. “Coming into this league, so many people doubted me, didn’t think my game would translate and I wouldn’t be the player that I was in college. … But I trusted the process and I believed and I’m thankful that I dropped to (pick No. 7) and was able to come to Chicago.”

It is the first time since 2014 that two rookies will take part in the game.

The 12 members of the 2024 U.S. Olympic team were automatically granted spots in the All-Star Game. Phoenix Mercury guard Diana Taurasi, who is appearing in her sixth Olympics, will also be playing in her 11th All-Star Game. Her teammate, center Brittney Griner, will be appearing in her 10th All-Star Game, including 2022 in which she was an honorary participant.

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The initial selection of the All-Stars was conducted through a combination of voting by fans (50 percent), a national panel of media members (25 percent) and current WNBA players (25 percent). Coaches filled out the remainder of the roster.

The format of the game will again be Team USA against Team WNBA. In 2021, the last time this format was used, Team WNBA defeated the U.S. Olympic team.

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Team WNBA:

Team USA:

Were there any snubs?

As my colleague Sabreena Merchant and I wrote last week, selecting Team WNBA would always be difficult. Reasonable cases can be made for each of the players selected. And all but one team (Washington Mystics) has at least one player in the exhibition.

Possible snubs, however, include Storm center Ezi Magbegor, Lynx center Alanna Smith and Liberty wing Betnijah Laney-Hamilton. Magbegor is in the running for Defensive Player of the Year honors. She leads the WNBA in total blocks (42), is seventh in rebounds per game (8.7), is third in offensive rebounds per game (2.9), is third in defensive win shares and fourth in overall win shares. Earlier this season, she recorded at least three blocks in eight consecutive games, the second-longest streak in WNBA history.

Smith anchors a Lynx defense that has the WNBA’s best defensive rating (91.3) since 2007. This season, she has recorded new career-highs in points, assists, steals and blocks. She is fourth in defensive win shares and is also shooting a career-best 46.4 percent from 3-point range. Smith and Magbegor are expected to be key members of the Australian national team this summer, but with both of them not making the WNBA All-Star Game, there is only one international player in the contest (Jonquel Jones).

“I thought she had a good chance as well,” Minnesota coach Cheryl Reeve said. “She’s really good for as well and we’re a good team with a good record. … I just know those things aren’t easy.”

Entering Tuesday night’s game against the Lynx, Laney-Hamilton, the versatile wing for New York, led all WNBA players who have appeared in more than five games in net rating (plus-19.9). She is again one of the WNBA’s top defenders.

Fever is most represented franchise on Team WNBA

After not having any players on the U.S. Olympic team, three members of the Fever (Clark, Boston and Mitchell) were named to Team WNBA, the most of any franchise. Boston, who is averaging 13.1 points and 8.3 rebounds per game, finished second in the fan vote and was automatically named to the team as a function of being in the top 10.

Like Boston, Mitchell is appearing in her second consecutive All-Star Game. She is averaging 16.3 points per game and was among the eight players named to the All-Star Game following the coaches’ vote.

McBride, Hamby highlight All-Star returnees

McBride, the Lynx guard, is returning to the All-Star Game for the first since 2019. She is Minnesota’s second-leading scorer with 15.8 points per game, her highest output since 2018, and the Lynx have the Western Conference’s best record entering Tuesday (14-4).

“I’m thrilled,” Reeve said. “I thought it was a bit of a no-brainer, but I’m thrilled when it happens. She’s had an incredible season to this point. Career-high in scoring it and just the ways that we count on (her), defensively, passing, everything that we ask her to do, making plays off the bounce. She’s just doing everything for us.”

Hamby is making her third All-Star appearance and the first since 2022. Having been traded in the 2023 offseason, Hamby is appearing in the game just over a year after the birth of her second child. She leads Los Angeles with career highs of 18.4 points and 10.3 rebounds per game. She will also participate in the Paris Olympics with Team USA’s 3×3 team.

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(Photo: Emilee Chinn / Getty Images)





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