Caitlin Clark’s $76,535 Starting WNBA Salary Sparked A Ton Of Conversation, Plus More Reactions To This Year’s Draft

On Monday night, the WNBA held its annual draft, this year at the Brooklyn Academy of Music in Brooklyn. It was a highly anticipated event, just weeks after the NCAA Women's Basketball National Championship. According to Nielsen ratings, the championship game was the most-viewed women's college basketball game ever and the most-viewed basketball game since 2019.

Female basketball player #10 leaps for a layup during a game, surrounded by opponents
Ben Solomon/NCAA Photos via Getty Images

The Iowa Hawkeyes, led by guard Caitlin Clark, took on the South Carolina Gamecocks, featuring star center Kamilla Cardoso.

Caitlin Clark on the court
Caitlin Clark on the court
Kamilla Cardoso gearing up to take a shot
Kamilla Cardoso gearing up to take a shot

Gregory Shamus / Getty Images, Justin Tafoya/NCAA Photos via Getty Images

The Gamecocks beats the Hawkeyes 87–75.

The championship game followed several notable matches in this year's tournament, including Iowa vs. Louisiana State University and their powerhouse forward Angel Reese in the Elite Eight.

Two basketball players in action during a game, one from Iowa wearing #22 and the other from LSU wearing #10

It was a rematch of the 2023 championship game, which LSU won. The Hawkeyes took the Elite Eight game.

Andy Lyons / Getty Images

Caitlin, Kamilla, Angel, and several other high-profile athletes were all in attendance and drafted Monday night, making for a lively ceremony.

LSU women's basketball player in action, dribbling the ball on the court during a game
Andy Lyons / Getty Images

The Indiana Fever selected Caitlin as the overall first draft pick.

Closeup of Caitlin Clark on the court

The internet had so many enthusiastic and supportive reactions to the drafted athletes:


@ohnohedidnt24/Twitter/ESPN / Via Twitter: @ohnohedidnt24


Tweet expressing excitement about two players being drafted into the WNBA, with congratulations and well-wishes
@goiowa/Twitter / Via Twitter: @goiowa


@SydJColson/Twitter / Via Twitter: @SydJColson


@OMG_itsizzyb/Twitter/Chicago Sky / Via Twitter: @OMG_itsizzyb


@monyenwere_/Twitter/Chicago Sky / Via Twitter: @monyenwere_


@TheWienerCircle/Twitter/Chicago Sky / Via Twitter: @TheWienerCircle


Indiana Fever/Twitter / Via Twitter: @IndianaFever


Bleacher Report/@AliyahFun/Twitter / Via Twitter: @BleacherReport


@brilewerke/Twitter / Via Twitter: @brilewerke

A bunch of celebs even voiced their support:


Wendell Pierce tweet congratulating Angel Reese on joining the WNBA and reflecting on his own journey
@WendellPierce/Twitter / Via Twitter: @WendellPierce


@DwyaneWade/Twitter / Via Twitter: @DwyaneWade


@jemelehill/Twitter / Via Twitter: @jemelehill


Tweet by Billie Jean King congratulating Caitlin Clark and others selected to play basketball in the upcoming WNBA season. #WNBADraft
@BillieJeanKing/Twitter / Via Twitter: @BillieJeanKing


@kerrywashington/Twitter/ESPN / Via Twitter: @kerrywashington

However, the draft also sparked a discussion about WNBA salaries for the top draftees. According to the WNBA's collective bargaining agreement, the first four draft picks will receive a $338,056 four-year contract, broken down to $76,535 in 2024, $78,066 in 2025, $85,873 in 2026, and an optional base of $97,582 in 2027.

It's important to note that WNBA athletes can make money in endorsement deals. In fact, Caitlin has already partnered with brands like Nike, State Farm, and Gatorade. Similarly, Angel has worked with brands like ReebokGoldman Sachs, Coach, and Amazon. Some WNBA athletes also play abroad in the off-season where they receive additional compensation.

Here's what several people, including NFL quarterback Russell Wilson, had to say about WNBA salaries:


@DangeRussWilson/Twitter/Barstool Sports / Via Twitter: @DangeRussWilson


@jemelehill/Twitter/@TheDunkCentral/Spotrac / Via Twitter: @jemelehill


@dillonliam/Twitter/Spotrac / Via Twitter: @dillonliam


ABC News Live/Twitter / Via Twitter: @ABCNewsLive

19. Finally, Hoda Kotb and Jenna Bush-Hager weighed in too:

NBC Universal / Via Twitter: @HodaAndJenna