Women's National Basketball Association
Caitlin Clark's betting impact continues: 'Expect records to be broken on a weekly basis'
Women's National Basketball Association

Caitlin Clark's betting impact continues: 'Expect records to be broken on a weekly basis'

Updated May. 18, 2024 1:17 p.m. ET

It took pretty much no time at all for Caitlin Clark to make a huge impact on WNBA betting. Tuesday’s regular-season opener between the Indiana Fever — who made Clark the No. 1 overall pick — and Connecticut Sun did relatively monster numbers for Caesars Sports.

The matchup drew more bets than any game in the entire 2023 WNBA season. Further, there were six times more bets on the Fever-Sun game than on the previous high-water mark for WNBA betting: last season’s Game 4 of the WNBA Finals, when the Las Vegas Aces clinched a second straight title by beating the New York Liberty.

"We expect records to be broken on a weekly basis, and even more so when the NBA Finals are over and the women’s game gets additional prime-time TV spots," Caesars Sports vice president of trading Craig Mucklow said.

Mucklow and Caesars lead pro basketball trader David Lieberman serve up some intriguing numbers already in, with odds on Caitlin Clark offerings hugely popular, and teams across the WNBA getting more betting attention, as well.


Preseason Primes the Pump

The WNBA had a 10-game preseason schedule. Clark and the Fever played in only two of those games, yet the league-wide preseason betting numbers at Caesars Sports were substantially larger than in 2023.

The total number of bets was up a whopping 385%, and the total amount of money wagered was up 140%. For games that didn’t even count.

"It’s already been on an upward trend year-to-year, and Clark Mania should only add to the interest," Lieberman said.

Feverish on Clark

Caitlin Clark odds in individual markets such as WNBA MVP are already wildly popular. So far at Caesars, Clark has taken 63% of MVP bets and 46% of MVP money.

Aces star A’ja Wilson, the 2020 and 2022 league MVP, is the even-money favorite (+100) in WNBA MVP odds this season. New York Liberty standout Breanna Stewart is the +550 second choice. Stewart is also a two-time winner, taking the award last year and in 2018.

Then comes Clark as the +850 third choice, in her rookie season after a record-smashing college career at Iowa.

"So far, we've seen more interest on the Indiana Fever/Caitlin Clark-related futures like MVP, Rookie of the Year and the Fever to win the championship," Lieberman said.

Indiana lost the aforementioned season opener to Connecticut 92-71. Still, the Fever are drawing 23% of all WNBA championship bets at Caesars, second only to the two-time defending champion Aces.

That said, even with Clark, Indiana has a hill to climb. In the 12-team league, the Fever are the +2000 fifth choice in Caesars’ odds to win the WNBA title. Las Vegas is the even-money favorite (+100), followed by New York (+240), Seattle (+850) and Connecticut (+1300).

Rising Rookie Tide Lifts All Boats

Mucklow pointed out that, while Clark is the main driver, a solid rookie class is contributing to the upswing of interest in WNBA odds. Former LSU star Angel Reese is now with the Chicago Sky. Stanford’s Cameron Brink was right behind Clark in the WNBA Draft at No. 2 overall, going to the Los Angeles Sparks.

"With the huge influx of talent in this year’s WNBA Draft adding to an already loaded wealth of veteran players, this year’s WNBA handle will eclipse anything we have seen before," Mucklow said.

Clark, Brink and Reese are 1-2-3, respectively, in Caesars’ WNBA Rookie of the Year odds, though Clark is a strong early favorite at -700. That means it would take a $700 bet to profit $100, for an $800 total payout if Clark wins the award.

If you want a bigger bang for your buck, you might consider Brink at +900. A $100 bet would profit $900, for a $1,000 total payout. Or take Reese at +2500, with a $100 wager profiting $2,500, for a $2,600 total payout.

Patrick Everson is a sports betting analyst for FOX Sports and senior reporter for VegasInsider.com. He is a distinguished journalist in the national sports betting space. He’s based in Las Vegas, where he enjoys golfing in 110-degree heat. Follow him on Twitter: @PatrickE_Vegas.


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