The Las Vegas Aces clipped the Indiana Fever’s wings right after they picked their first win of the season against the Sparks.

In a 99-80 home game win, multiple Aces had an opportunity to shine. However, the one that impressed Becky Hammon the most was Kate Martin. The head coach sat with her 23-year-old rookie at the post-game presser and complimented her for a brilliant performance against Caitlin Clark and Co.

When a reporter asked HC Hammon about the best quality of the 23-year-old guard, she said, “Her mind.” Interestingly, the Aces head coach lost her voice as she had to scream at her players throughout the game. But eventually, it all paid off well.

Hammon also highlighted the value of having a good basketball IQ,

“Her mind for the game…She’s a basketball player and if you know what that means, then you should watch her.”

Aces' Kate Martin Moving Up in WNBA Rookie Power Rankings

Other than Martin, who scored 12 points with seven rebounds and one assist in 22 minutes, three others scored in double digits. A’Ja Wilson, Kelsey Plum, and Jackie Young added 29, 20, and 22 points respectively.

The Aces HC added that despite being a rookie, Martin understands her spots well and ensures she’s in the right place at the right time to benefit her team. Apart from winning over her coach’s trust, Martin is slowly becoming a fan favorite for the city, and her relationship with seniors in the squad like Wilson is also growing steadily.

Kate Martin and A’Ja Wilson share great chemistry

The 18th pick in the second round of the 2024 WNBA Draft seems to be getting along with her new squad. The former Iowa Hawkeye even engaged in a hilarious bet with Wilson. Interestingly, the 27-year-old made her pull up to the Fever game in a South Carolina Gamecocks gear.

As we already know, Clark is also an alumnus of Iowa, and it must’ve been a shocking experience for her to see her college mate wearing the Gamecocks gear. According to Meghan L. Hall, Candace Parker is also involved in this bet, and it’ll be interesting to see when she decides to pay up her end of the bargain.

Seeing the rookie building up such chemistry with the squad so soon shows the culture the back-to-back WNBA champions have developed in the team. Even though Wilson and Kelsey Plum posted better numbers, HC Hammon backed her rookie in the post-game presser. This would certainly boost her confidence and motivate her to compete in every game with the same vigor.