Caitlin Clark’s first WNBA game kind of proved Diana Taurasi right

Diana Taurasi was right and she's got 10 turnovers to prove it.
Caitlin Clark
Caitlin Clark / David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

Diana Taurasi hasn't been shy about sharing often unpopular opinions about Caitlin Clark. She said she would take UConn guard Paige Bueckers over her in the WNBA Draft and, most notably, warned that Clark will have a rude awakening as a pro.

"Reality is coming," Taurasi said on SportsCenter in April. "There's levels to this thing and that's just life. We all went through it...You look superhuman playing against 18-year-olds but you're going to come play with some grown women that have been playing professional basketball for a long time. Not saying that it's not going to translate because when you're great at what do you're just going to get better. But there's going to be a transition period where you're going to have to give yourself some grace as a rookie."

Whether you agree with the approach to her criticism or not, Clark's WNBA debut supported the latter of Taurasi's claims. The WNBA is already challenging Clark in ways she's not accustomed to after just one game.

Caitlin Clark met reality in WNBA debut, just like Diana Taurasi said

The Fever lost to the Connecticut Sun, 92-71, in Clark's debut. She dropped a game-high 20 points, so her scoring touch was still very much apparent. However, she got into foul trouble and committed 10 turnovers.

As good of a shooter Clark is, she still has to adjust to playing at the professional level, which is pretty much what Taurasi predicted.

Connecticut got physical with Clark, making her work for everything she got. The pace of play was faster than she's used to. The players are bigger and stronger and faster than she's used to. The defenders are better at defending.

There will be more where that came from as other teams look to humble the No. 1 overall pick.

None of this is a surprise. And none of this means that Clark will bust in the pros. She's one of just three WNBA rookies to score 20 points and hit four 3-pointers in their debut. She's still great, but in the words of Diana Taurasi, she's in "a transition period where [she's] going to have to give [herself] some grace as a rookie."