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Can Caitlin Clark, Fever Avenge Humbling Loss to Liberty?

Indiana Coming Off 36-Point Drubbing to New York in Home Opener

The WNBA schedule-makers did what opponents of Caitlin Clark have been unable to do over the last four seasons when she was rewriting the NCAA record book while leading the University of Iowa to back-to-back NCAA Division I women’s basketball title game appearances.

After Clark and the Fever were outmuscled by the Connecticut Sun in the 2024 season opener, they were destroyed by 2003 WNBA runner-up New York at home with the Fever failing to cover against the WNBA odds in each of those games.

Can Caitlin Clark, Fever Avenge Humbling Loss to Liberty
Caitlin Clark #22 of the Indiana Fever - Elsa/Getty Images/AFP

Two days after New York’s 102-66 win against Indiana, the teams will meet again with Saturday’s matchup coming at Barclays Center and airing on national television

The Liberty are listed by the WNBA betting line as the favorite on Saturday – just as was the case in the first two games of the season for the best team in the Eastern Conference.

New York has won its last six regular-season games against Indiana and that included all three games in 2023.

According to the WNBA odds, New York is second at +250 in the odds of winning the WNBA title. Indiana is tied for fifth at +2000 in the championship odds.

 

Fever vs Liberty Game Information

  • Game: Fever (0-2) at Liberty (2-0)
  • Date/Time: Saturday, May 18, 1 p.m. ET
  • Location: Barclay Center, New York, NY
  • Fever vs Liberty Live Stream: WNBA.com

 

Stewart Takes Control Against the Fever

In a game featuring four former No. 1 overall picks, it was reigning WNBA regular-season Most Valuable Player Breanna Stewart who shined the brightest in Thursday’s matchup between Indiana and New York.

Stewart scored 11 of her 31 points in the first quarter as New York’s two former No. 1 overall draft picks outscored Aliyah Boston and Clark, the top selections in the 2023 and 2024 drafts, 20-6 in the opening quarter.

 


Four starters scored in double figures for the Liberty and five New York players had at least three assists in the game as the Liberty scored at least 100 points for the third consecutive game against the Fever.

Sabrina Ionescu added 14 points and Jonquel Jones had a double-double with 14 points and 10 rebounds.

 

Caitlin Clark Looks to Break Free in Rematch

The good news is that Caitlin Clark went from committing 10 turnovers in her first WNBA regular-season season game to finishing with six assists and three turnovers against New York on Thursday.

However, the all-time leading scorer in NCAA Division I women’s basketball history was held under 10 points in a regular-season game for the first time since her freshman season at the University of Iowa, when she had eight points on 3-of-12 shooting in a loss to Northwestern.

Teams are focusing their defensive game plan on limiting the open looks for Clark, and that resulted in her only getting eight field-goal attempts as she had nine points in the loss.

Clark could use some help from her veteran teammates as she is Indiana’s only double-digit scorer. NaLyssa Smith is averaging 9.0 points per game and Boston is contributing eight points per game on 33% shooting.

Kelsey Mitchell, who is averaging 16.3 points over her seven-year run with the Fever and is still working her way back from injury, has a total of 13 points in the first two games of the season,

 

Liberty vs Fever Injury Update

Forward Damiris Dantas is out for the Fever while New York looks to be in good shape from an injury standpoint heading into the rematch with the Fever.

 

Liberty vs Fever Best Bet: Go With the Liberty

It is pretty rare to see 30-point victories in the WNBA and it is almost unheard of for that to happen in back-to-back meetings.

Indiana should be able to get more done on Saturday than was the case in the first meeting of the season. However, that game was a reminder that New York has perhaps the best starting five, at least from an offensive standpoint, in the WNBA while Indiana has more questions than answers right now.

Four of Indiana’s last five games went under the total. New York has covered in just four of its last 15 games.

The Fever figure to be more competitive in the rematch, but covering on the road against New York could be a tall task.

Stewart, who averaged 23.7 points against the Fever a season ago, will be the focus of the New York offense as she was in Thursday’s game.

There have been 541 points scored in the last three games between the Liberty and the Fever so that is something to consider when it comes to the WNBA over/under picks. Don’t be surprised to see the game land over the total after a missed free throw by each team in the final 90 seconds prevented Thursday’s game from going over the number.

 

 

Fever vs Liberty Prediction

Liberty 95, Fever 85

 

 

Questions of the Day

When was the last time that Indiana won in the regular season against New York?


Indiana defeated New York 92-86 in overtime on May 13, 2022, as Kelsey Mitchell finished with 24 points.

How has Indiana fared against the spread on the road against the Liberty?


Indiana has covered in just one of its last five road games versus New York.

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