Indiana Congressman Jim Banks sends letter to WNBA asking about punishments for ‘excessive attack’ on Caitlin Clark

After WNBA star Caitlin Clark was flagrantly fouled by another player, Republican Congressman Jim Banks sent a letter to the commissioner of the WNBA asking what steps the league is taking to curb “excessive physical targeting” of players.

The Indiana politician sent the letter to Commissioner Cathy Engelbert stating that he has watched Clark’s team, the Indiana Fever, in “admiration” since she was drafted into the league as the first overall pick in 2024.


The congressman then remarked on Clark having “shattered on court and viewership records for women’s basketball.”

“Unfortunately, since joining the WNBA, Clark’s exceptionalism has been met with resentment and repeated attacks from fellow players,” Banks wrote, per Outkick.

Banks pointed to Chicago Sky player Chennedy Carter bodychecking Clark to the floor as teammate Angel Reese “visibly cheered.”

Reese was fined $1,000 by the WNBA for refusing to answer reporter questions after the game. The team itself was fined $5,000 for violating media availability rules, while Carter had her foul upgraded from a regular foul to a flagrant foul.

The Chicago Tribune even likened the foul to “an assault” if it were “outside of a sporting contest.”


“Indiana is a basketball state. We don’t wince at aggressive defense, but this was not an example of playing ‘tough’ it was a cheap shot that could have resulted in an injury and should not be tolerated. While the foul was retroactively upgraded to a flagrant, there appears to be no further punishment for Carter or the Chicago Sky organization beyond fines related to a lack of media appearances after the game. ”

The Republican then suggested that the WNBA “refuses to hold hostile players accountable,” stating that it has been a “disservice” to the millions of female viewers who aspire to play in the league.

He then positioned four questions to the WNBA commissioner:

• “What steps is the WNBA taking to curb excessive physical targeting of specific players?”

• “Will individual organizations be held responsible for allowing players with histories of violence to physically target their competitors?”

• “Do you believe that WNBA players repeatedly diminishing the talents of their fellow players is beneficial to the leagues’ overall success?”

• “Do you believe that it is inspiring to young female athletes to see players like the Indiana’s Caitlin Clark physically targeted for her success?”

The congressman then thanked the commissioner for her work to grow women’s basketball.

The WNBA nor its commissioner has made a public response as of this writing.

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