INDIANAPOLIS, INDIANA - JUNE 16: Angel Reese #5 of the Chicago Sky reacts after fouling Caitlin Clark #22 of the Indiana Fever during the second half at Gainbridge Fieldhouse on June 16, 2024 in Indianapolis, Indiana. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Emilee Chinn/Getty Images)

Emilee Chinn/Getty Images

Angel Reese hit Caitlin Clark on the head while trying to block her layup attempt during the Indiana Fever’s 91-83 win over the Chicago Sky on Sunday, earning a flagrant 1 in the process.

That provided a certain group of people on social media—the sort who are just waiting for something to get angry about, especially when it comes to Clark—the fodder they required, though the rookie point guard didn’t think it was anything more than a basketball play gone slightly awry.

“It’s just a part of basketball,” she told reporters. “It is what it is. Just trying to make a play on the ball and get the block. It happens.”

Reese offered a similar take on the situation.

“It was a basketball play. I can’t control the refs. They affected the game obviously a lot today,” she told reporters. “I’m always going for the ball. Y’all are going to play that clip 20 times before Monday.”

Upgrading the call to a flagrant 1 was clearly the right call. Reese may have been making a natural basketball play, but she made clear contact with Clark’s head in the process. That’s about as deep as the situation needed to go.

But the ridiculous takes followed nonetheless.

As for the basketball itself, Clark was fantastic in the game, scoring 23 points on 7-of-11 shooting from the field (3-of-7 from three) to go along with nine assists and eight rebounds. Turnovers remain an issue, as she gave the ball away five times, but she was the best player on the court Sunday.

Reese finished with 11 points, 13 rebounds, five assists, two steals and one block, making her usual two-way impact, though she struggled from the field (4-of-13).

The rivalry between Clark and Reese continues to be zesty, dating back to their college days, but the Fever point guard embraces it.

“That’s what makes it fun,” Clark said of the passion the two rookies share. “We’re competitors. That’s the way the game should be. It’s going to get a little feisty, it’s going to get physical, but at the end of the day both teams are just trying to win.”

Did you hear that, hot-take provocateurs of the world? It’s just a part of the game. You can all stand down now.