NBA

Former NBA Enforcer Matt Barnes To Caitlin Clark’s Teammates: ‘You Always Protect The Star’

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - MAY 18: Caitlin Clark #22 of the Indiana Fever and the team huddle after the game against the New York Liberty at Barclays Center on May 18, 2024 in New York City. The New York Liberty defeated the Indiana Fever 91-80. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

Teams target Caitlin Clark as soon as she steps onto a WNBA court. Clark should expect nothing less as a huge college basketball star going pro. Women’s basketball fans differ in opinion about this, but for Matt Barnes, Clark’s teammates should be held accountable.

Barnes, a career-long NBA enforcer, shared his thoughts on the issue in a video below:

So there’s a hot topic going on right now. Caitlin Clark, they say she got cheap-shotted against the Sky. I mean, throughout the season, she’s been getting beat up. Hard screens, elbows, knocked down. It is what it is. She’s not the first, she won’t be the last.

My issue and my issue is, where the f— are her teammates at? Where y’all at? Where the rest of the Indiana Fever at? I saw a couple of girls smirk when she’s got knocked down, half ass to pick here up. Like, y’all supposed to protect the asset, protect the star. Although this is a team, she is the star and you always protect your star.”

Matt Barnes on the Caitlin Clark situation via All The Smoke

If there is anyone who can explain the enforcer role satisfactorily, it’s Barnes. Teams signed the NBA veteran to be a bodyguard to the stars on the court. He insisted the rest of the Fever should step up to defend Clark.

As someone who protected the stars– you f— with Kobe, CP, Blake. List goes on. It’s gonna be a problem because you guys are supposed to be a family. And you wonder why you sit at the bottom of the league right now because you don’t protect each other, man. Coach don’t do s— about it, players don’t do s— about it; y’all should be ashamed of it. 

The rest of the league is going to continue to test her and that’s what they’re supposed to do. It’s your guys’ job to have her back, to have each others’ backs. Got to do better, ladies.

Matt Barnes on the Indiana Fever

The play that had everyone riled up was this body check by Cheneddy Carter. The ball has not reached Clark’s hands yet and Carter bumps the 2024 No. 1 overall pick to the ground.

By the Chicago Sky’s bench reaction, it did look like the former Iowa Hawkeye had a bounty on her head.

Basketball is a physical sport and as long as nobody is trying to end someone’s career, the girls should play on. However, as Barnes noted, the Indiana Fever is not winning the psychological battle right now.