Caitlin Clark’s Shocking WNBA Salary Revealed

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The excitement of Caitlin Clark’s WNBA draft quickly died down after reports came out about what her salary would look like.

Who is Caitlin Clark?

Caitlin Clark is a basketball player, who led Iowa to the NCAA Championship game two years in a row. While they lost both years, Clark gained national attention for her playing style and insane shooting skills.

In March 2024, she became the all-time leading scorer across men’s and women’s college basketball, breaking a 54-year-old record. Her contribution to the popularity of women’s basketball has been dubbed the “Caitlin Clark effect.”

Caitlin Clark / Instagram

During her senior season at Iowa, six different TV networks ( Big Ten Network, ABC, Fox, FS1, NBC, and Peacock) had their most-viewed women’s basketball games when her team was playing on their station.

Her last two collegiate games also brought in more viewers than the Super Bowl, the World Series, and other major sporting events. The NCAA Final had 18.7 million viewers.

After an illustrious collegiate career, Clark declared for the 2024 WNBA Draft, which took place on April 15.

Which WNBA team drafted Caitlin Clark?

It was long suspected that Clark would be drafted by the Indiana Fever, who had the first draft pick this year. To no one’s surprise, the Fever did select Clark as their number-one pick, which sent Fever fans (and players) into a frenzy.

Fever players Erica Wheeler, Maya Caldwell, and Lexie Hull were front and center at their team’s watch party at their home arena and went absolutely bonkers went Clark’s name was called.

They jumped out of their seats and immediately put on Clark jerseys to celebrate with their home crowd.


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How much will Caitlin Clark make in the WNBA?

According to a report made by Michael Ginnitti, the co-founder a company that breaks down professional athlete contracts and salaries, Spotrac, Clark is estimated to make $338,056 in her first four years as a pro.

He broke it down by each year, which you can see below.

Caitlin Clark's WNBA Salary revealed
Spotrac / X

These numbers completely shocked fans, seeing as Clark is arguably the biggest thing to ever happen to women’s basketball.

NFL quarterback Russell Wilson reacted to this report by saying, “These ladies deserve so much more…Praying for the day.” 

In comparison, the NBA’s number-one draft pick, Victor Wembanyama, will reportedly make $55.7 million in his first four years in the league. ESPN reported that the smallest NBA contract, which belongs to the Toronto Raptors’ Javon Freeman-Liberty, will make $289,542 this season.

We’re sure that Clark’s contract will be restructured after four years, if not sooner, and she will eventually become the highest-paid WNBA player in history. The Fever is already seeing their own “Caitlin Clark Effect,” with fans reporting that tickets to their home opener against the New York Liberty are going for over $2,000.

Clark will make a decent chunk of change with brand deals, which she already start in her collegiate career. She is signed to Nike, Gatorade, State Farm, and Buick, just to name a few.

Even though with her brand deals, she will be doing just fine, her salary reveal sparked an online debate on whether WNBA players should be paid more.

Hoda Kotb and Jenna Bush Hager spoke at length on their Hoda and Jenna hour of the TODAY Show.

KOtb and Bush Hager revealed their frustration at the wage gap between NBA and WNBA players.

“When I saw the number, $76,000 in the first year and $78,000 in the second year, and $85,000 in the third year, for somebody who is now the face of women’s basketball, it seemed kind of ridiculous,” Hoda said. “A guy who is in the NBA, first year, they can get $10 million.”

But, what it comes down to is viewership and TV deals. The NBA has a $67 billion TV deal that pays the league $2.7 billion. The WNBA’s deal makes around $60 million.

Stephen Master, a former NBA em ployee and current professor of sports marketing and media at NYU, says that WNBA viewership needs to rise by 400-500% for the WNBA to be able to renegotiate a better TV deal.

Watch Kotb and Bush Hager speak about it in the video below.