The USA Women’s Basketball roster for the 2024 Paris Olympic Games came out over the weekend and the selections turned heads, mainly for one very notable omission: Indiana Fever rookie Caitlin Clark.

Amid all the backlash over Clark’s snub, Phoenix Mercury center Brittany Griner addressed the media and shared her thoughts about what it meant to be selected to play for Team USA this summer.

“You’re representing your country,” Griner told the media. “You’re on the highest stage. It doesn’t get any higher than that. … Anytime we get to put on the red, white, and blue, USA across our chest, you know we’re gonna get every country’s best shot. … You’re just playing for so much more. I can’t wait to go.”

Social media sounded off on Caitlin Clark’s Olympics snub:

There has been a lot of criticism over Clark being left off the team, with many notable media members slamming USA Basketball’s decision to not include Clark, arguably the most famous women’s basketball player in the world right now.

ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith, Dick Vitale, former NBA player Paul Pierce and FOX Sports’ Colin Cowherd were among those to voice their displeasure with the Clark omission.

Social media questioned Brittney Griner over Caitlin Clark Olympics selection:

Interestingly, many on social media questioned why Griner, who just resumed playing this season after being out with an injury, made the team over Clark, with some also bringing up Griner’s past comments about the national anthem as a reason why she shouldn’t have been selected over Clark (not taking into account the fact that Griner is a center, and Clark is guard).

Brittney GRINER (USA)'s profile - 2016 Rio 2016 - Olympic Basketball  Tournament (Women) -

What Brittney Griner said about the national anthem in 2020

The comments from some referenced in the posts above were from a 2020 interview Griner had with The Arizona Republic.

In that interview, Griner said: “I honestly feel we should not play the national anthem during our season. I think we should take that much of a stand.  I don’t mean that in any disrespect to our country. My dad was in Vietnam and a law officer for 30 years. I wanted to be a cop before basketball. I do have pride for my country.”

Griner’s 2020 comments came amid protests throughout the country in the wake of the Breonna Taylor incident and the Black Lives Matter movement.

Why Brittney Griner Stood for the National Anthem - The Atlantic

“I’m going to protest regardless,” she told The Republic’s Jeff Metcalfe in that interview on July 27, 2020. “I’m not going to be out there for the national anthem. If the league continues to want to play it, that’s fine. It will be all season long, I’ll not be out there. I feel like more are going to probably do the same thing. I can only speak for myself.

“At the Olympics, I understand, you’re playing for your country at that point.”

She continued: “I’m glad I’m able to look to my left and to my right at my sisters and see we’re all together fighting,” Griner said of the WNBA’s season-long commitment to social justice issues.

What Brittney Griner said about the national anthem in 2023

Last season, however, Griner appeared to soften her stance about standing for the national anthem after spending nearly 10 months in a Russian prison.

“Hearing the national anthem, it definitely hit different,” Griner told reporters after standing with her teammates for the anthem before a preseason game. “It’s like when you go for the Olympics, you’re sitting there, about to get gold put on your neck, the flags are going up, and the anthem is playing, it just hits different.”