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Fever coach reveals Caitlin Clark’s initial reaction after Olympics snub

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Indiana Fever head coach Christie Sides said she was disappointed with the decision to leave Caitlin Clark off of the U.S. Olympic national women’s basketball team roster and revealed what the rookie told her after the snub.

Clark was on the team bus when she got the call about the roster and Sides said she received a text from Clark about the news.

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Christie Sides and Caitlin Clark in DC

Head coach Christie Sides and Caitlin Clark of the Indiana Fever celebrate after a 85-83 victory against the Mystics at Capital One Arena on June 7, 2024, in Washington, D.C. (G Fiume/Getty Images)

“A little disappointed, of course. She’s my player,” Sides explained, via the Indy Star. “You know, that’s the hardest team in the world to make. That is a tough team. She’s young. She’s going to have so many opportunities in the future.

“We talked, actually, on the bus. She got the call on the bus. She texted me to let me know. I just tried to keep her spirits (up). The thing she said is, ‘Hey, coach. They woke a monster’ – which I thought was awesome.”

Sides was then asked how much more of a “monster” Clark could be.

Christie Sides vs New York City

Christie Sides of the Indiana Fever during the Liberty game at Barclays Center on June 2, 2024, in New York City. (Luke Hales/Getty Images)

“I don’t know, man. It’s pretty scary, right? She’s one of the most competitive people I know. She’s a worker and that’s what she’s gonna do. This just gave her another opportunity to get in the gym and do more work. And she’s also saying, ‘Coach, I just want to focus on our team,’ as well. That is really good to hear from her too.”

CAITLIN CLARK’S ABSENCE FROM OLYMPIC SQUAD IS A ‘MISSED OPPORTUNITY’ FOR WOMEN’S BASKETBALL, DAN DAKICH SAYS

Sides and Clark both agreed the “silver lining” was the rest the sharpshooter will receive in between the Olympics and the regular season.

Clark offered a classy response to being left off the team.

Christie Sides and Caitlin Clark

Christie Sides and Caitlin Clark of the Indiana Fever during the second half of the Liberty game at Barclays Center on June 2, 2024, in New York City. (Luke Hales/Getty Images)

“I’m excited for the girls who 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,” she said, via The Athletic. “So, I’m excited for them. I’m going to be rooting them on to win gold. I was a kid that grew up watching the Olympics. So, yeah, it’ll be fun to watch them. 

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“No disappointment. I think it just gives you something to work for. That’s a dream. Hopefully, one day I can be there. I think it’s just a little more motivation. You remember that. And hopefully in four years, when four years comes back around, I can be there.”

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