Bizarre Rumors Say Caitlin Clark Joined Women’s National Team After Brittney Griner Released for ‘Undisclosed Reasons’?

One Facebook user wrote of the rumor, “The committee should select the best to represent our loyalty and love for our country and to honor our flag.”

 (America's Last Line Of Defense/Facebook)

Image courtesy of America’s Last Line Of Defense/Facebook

On June 14, 2024, a Facebook page named America’s Last Line Of Defense posted a meme positing the USA Basketball Women’s National Team added WNBA rookie phenom and Indiana Fever guard Caitlin Clark to its roster. According to the post, Clark joined only after the team released Phoenix Mercury center Brittney Griner for “undisclosed reasons.” The meme read, “Team USA: ‘Britney Griner is OUT – Caitlin Clark is IN.'”

An online rumor claimed Caitlin Clark replaced Brittney Griner for the 2024 Paris Olympic Games.

The text caption above the America’s Last Line Of Defense Facebook post read, “Team USA had to release Brittney Griner for ‘undisclosed reasons,’ which some are interpreting as a rule violation related to her testosterone levels. ‘We won’t have answers before Paris. Caitlin is in.’ Sometimes karma just works out.”

This purported news was not a factual recounting of real-life events. The America’s Last Line of Defense Facebook page is one part of a larger network of satire and parody websites, which also is called America’s Last Line of Defense. According to the page’s description, “Nothing on this page is real.” The lower-right corner of the meme also displayed a satire rating label. The post’s mention of Griner and “testosterone levels” referenced a false conspiracy theory claiming she was born male.

The inspiration for this rumor stemmed from Clark’s exclusion from the USA Basketball Women’s National Team for the 2024 Paris Olympic Games, a development first reported earlier in June.

Other similar claims about Clark and Griner originating from different Facebook pages mentioning satire and parody falsely said Griner was disqualified, booted for misconduct or embroiled in a scandal. A different meme published by the main Facebook page for America’s Last Line Of Defense also read, “Team USA Loses $60 Million in Endorsements After the Caitlin Clark Snub: ‘We Can’t Back That Decision.'” None of these stories reflected genuine news.

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