Should We Be Outraged Caitlin Clark Isn’t Making as Much Money in the WNBA as Men Make in the NBA?

AP Photo/Adam Hunger

Yesterday we got a tweet from the Biden White House about women’s sports. “Women in sports continue to push new boundaries and inspire us all. But right now we’re seeing that even if you’re the best, women are not paid their fair share,” it reads. “It’s time that we give our daughters the same opportunities as our sons and ensure women are paid what they deserve.”

First of all, who the hell wants to hear from this White House – which is trying to make it easier for boys to play against girls in women’s sports – about fairness? Please spare me. My no one believes you. You have no moral authority. 

Second of all, I believe this is a reference to Caitlin Clark, the collegiate basketball star at Iowa who is now going to the WNBA for a relative pittance compared to what men get going into the NBA. 

I can’t tell you the number of people who have tried to get me upset over this because they know I’m pro-women and I’m pro-women’s rights. But my reaction to everyone has been the same: Nobody watches the WNBA. If Clark brings more eyeballs to it, then her second deal is going to be amazing and that would be great.

The pay disparity President Biden is probably talking about is as follows. Clark was the number one pick in the WNBA draft on Monday. She was drafted by the Indiana Fever and signed a four-year deal worth roughly $338,000. Under the WNBA’s collective bargaining agreement, Clark will have a starting salary of $76,535. She will then make $78,066 in year two, $85,873 in year three, and $97,582 in year four.

In contrast, the number one overall pick in the 2023 NBA draft, Victor Wembanyama, is currently on a four-year deal with the San Antonio Spurs worth more than $55 million. He made $12.1 million in his first season.

So, am I a sexist pig? 

The NCAA women’s final between Clark’s Iowa Hawkeyes and the undefeated South Carolina Gamecocks crushed ratings records. It averaged 18.7 million viewers, which made it the most-watched basketball game – men’s or women’s, college or professional – since 2019. 

It was exciting, no doubt. But the problem is the sport as a whole is just not there yet. I see people tuning into the NFL, to the NBA, and to some of these other male sports leagues in droves. That is just not the case for women at the moment. 

If Clark can bring the WNBA to that level (and her talent coupled with her seven-figure endorsement deals suggest she may be able to), then she will get paid. But she has no right to make what her equal over there in the NBA makes in being number one in a far more competitive league. That’s part of why he is getting so much more that she is getting. It is not an apples to apples comparison.

You can check out Megyn’s full analysis by tuning in to episode 769 on YouTube, Apple Podcasts, or wherever you like to listen. And don’t forget that you can catch The Megyn Kelly Show live on SiriusXM’s Triumph (channel 111) weekdays from 12pm to 2pm ET.