UConn’s Paige Bueckers is an early favorite for the No. 1 pick in the 2025 WNBA draft. Here’s why the internet is loving her right now

UConn’s Paige Bueckers is an early favorite for the No. 1 pick in the 2025 WNBA draft. Here’s why the internet is loving her right now.

Paige Bueckers at the 2024 WNBA Draft.

Paige Bueckers at the 2024 WNBA Draft.
 John Nacion/Sportico via Getty Images

Paige Bueckers, 22, is a star guard on UConn’s women’s basketball team.
She’s returning to UConn in the fall, but fans are already anticipating her WNBA debut.

Her style and support for her teammates at this year’s draft have gotten a lot of love online.

Paige Bueckers was one of the most-talked-about names after the 2024 WNBA draft on Monday, April 15, and she wasn’t even one of the recruits.

Styled in an all-white Louis Vuitton look and gold accessories, Bueckers stood in the audience, smiling, cheering, and taking pictures of her former UConn teammates Aaliyah Edwards and Nika Mühl as they were drafted by the Washington Mystics and Seattle Storm, respectively.

The internet quickly made a meme of Bueckers’ reactions on X (formerly known as Twitter), describing her as a “proud mom.”

Even UConn Women’s Basketball participated in the conversation, tweeting a video of Bueckers’ reaction to Edwards’ selection with the caption, “you’re doing amazing sweetie” (a nod to another “proud mom,” Kris Jenner).

But while she captured the internet’s heart as a spectator, Bueckers is a bonafide star on the court who’ll be entering her fifth — and likely last — year at UConn, eyeing a national championship before transitioning to the WNBA.

With all the mention of Caitlin Clark in the last year, it’s almost easy to forget that Bueckers was the original “It Girl” of the 2020 draft class.

In 2021, she won numerous awards, including the Naismith Trophy, the Wooden Award, the ESPY for Best College Athlete — Women’s Sports, and the Big East Player of the Year — all as a freshman, per UConn.

Bueckers’ momentum was disrupted by injuries during her sophomore season, and an ACL tear left her benched for the entirety of her junior year, leading to an exciting, long-awaited return to the court in 2023 and a promising March Madness run to the Final Four.

The 2023-2024 season lifted women’s college basketball to unprecedented heights, with the NCAA women’s final attracting more viewers than the men’s for the first time and NIL deals giving players like Clark and Angel Reese a larger platform to market themselves and the sport to a wider audience.

The shift isn’t just limited to college athletics. The 2023 WNBA season was “its most-watched regular season in 21 years,” the league reported, and Deloitte predicted women’s sports will surpass $1 billion in revenue for the first time.

Get to know Paige Bueckers before she returns to UConn for her last dance and discover why she’s the internet’s latest obsession.

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