The WNBA is finding itself under new levels of scrutiny. That's what happens when millions of new eyes are now watching your product. But what we're seeing some nights isn't the game we were promised. It is something much darker.

Caitlin Clark is a supernova in women's basketball. She drew millions to the college game and most have followed her to the WNBA. League ratings and revenue are sky-high. And while most knowledgeable basketball fans knew that Clark would need time to transition to the pro game, what she faces by opposing defenses night after night is more than any other player in the league is facing. It feels like it is being done to send a message.

That message reached a new level on Saturday when the Fever hosted the Chicago Sky. It was the first professional duel between Clark and Angel Reese. And while they did have a brief encounter in the paint, the foul heard around the world was courtesy of Sky guard Chennedy Carter. Carter slammed Clark to the ground as the Fever were about to inbound the ball. A foul was called, but at the time it was not ruled a technical foul. However, WeAreIowa reports that the WNBA has upgraded the foul to a flagrant 1 after an official review.

Indiana Fever v New York Liberty
Getty Images

I knew that Caitlin Clark was going to have her ups and downs during her rookie season. She scored 30 points in a game this month. Last night, she was held to 3 points in a loss to New York. What I didn't tune in to watch was the most popular young player in the league get hammered and beat up night after night. Is it hatred? I hope not. Jealousy? How could it not be? But this vendetta against Clark and her popularity is making the WNBA look petty and small. And that is NOT what I tuned in to watch.

The league needs to get this figured out. Clark is figuring out how to play in a much more physical league and has held her head high. But she left last night's game early due to injury. What happens when the league's meal ticket gets hurt? Call fouls. Call technicals. Hand out fines. We came to watch basketball, not a brawl.

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