Paige Bueckers gets honest about her issue with Caitlin Clark and how much attention she gets

Former teammates are going head to head in the Final Four.

Paige Bueckers doesn't like how much attention Caitlin Clark gets

As the anticipation builds for Friday night’s Final Four contest between UConn and Iowa, the connected histories between Paige Bueckers and Caitlin Clark are driving the narrative. While Clark praised her former teammate in the press, Bueckers revealed that she has a big problem with how much attention Clark gets from the media.

Paige Bueckers admits her issue with Caitlin Clark

When asked about filling the role as the face of college basketball once the Iowa star plays her final game, Bueckers insisted that she does not want to be like Caitlin Clark because of the negative impact the circus around her has on the sport and its other stars.

“I think it’s more important for the game to share the spotlight. To grow the game and show all the stars of college basketball, not just focus on one particular player,” Bueckers said Thursday.

As a former “media darling” herself during her freshman season, prior to multiple long-term injuries, Bueckers knows what it’s like to get put on the pedestal, and she doesn’t like it.

“I honestly hope next year I’m not the focal point and the only person that gets attention. I hope as media, as players, we can spread the love a little bit more,” she added.

Bueckers called out the media at the ESPYS in 2021

Her criticism is focused on the media, not Clark. Her comments about Clark in 2024 follow a similar line of thinking to her impactful ESPYS speech in 2021, back when she had the spotlight on her.

“With the light that I have now as a White woman who leads a Black-led sport and celebrated here, I want to shed a light on Black women,” she said while accepting her ESPY award in 2021.. “They don’t get the media coverage that they deserve.”

“Sports media holds the key to storylines. Sports media and sponsors tell us who is valuable, and you have told the world that I mattered today, and everyone who voted, thank you. But I think we should use this power together to also celebrate Black women,” she said.

Her three-year-old speech still feels very poignant in 2024 given the racial overtones of the Caitlin Clark vs Angel Reese saga that has played out the past two seasons.

Clearly, Paige is not a fan of one player getting all the shine. The good news for her is that on Friday, the pressure will be shared between her former teammate and herself, as she tries to end Caitlin Clark’s college career and usher in a new era a little early.

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