Fever, Caitlin Clark draw historic WNBA crowd in loss to Aces: 'There was just mobs of people'

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The heavily anticipated matchup between the Indiana Fever and the Las Vegas Aces Tuesday night drew the largest crowd the WNBA has seen in nearly three decades, a trend that continues to follow the growing popularity of this year’s No. 1 overall pick, Caitlin Clark. 

The Aces’ veteran-stacked roster earned its fifth straight win with an 88-69 victory over the Fever before a crowd of more than 20,000 fans that packed into T-Mobile Arena, the home of the NHL’s Vegas Golden Knights. 

Caitlin Clark (22) of the Indiana Fever handles the ball against Jackie Young (0) of the Las Vegas Aces in the first quarter of a game at T-Mobile Arena July 2, 2024, in Las Vegas. The Aces defeated the Fever 88-69. (Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

The game attracted the largest regular-season crowd at a WNBA game since 1999, and it was the fifth largest crowd in league history. 


“It was probably one of the best we’ve had from an energy standpoint, even during warm-ups,” Clark said after the game. “The amount of people here just watching warm-ups, that’s when I can kind of get a gauge on how good the crowd is or how excited they are about the game. Obviously, they’re always excited, but tonight it just felt very different. There was just mobs of people watching us warm up and stuff.

“I think it was 20,000. That’s a lot of people,” Clark added. “It’s great. It’s super cool to be a part of. And I hope everybody enjoyed it and also everybody saw how good the Aces are. That was really good for them too, and obviously their fans show up and are incredible themselves.” 

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Caitlin Clark of the Indiana Fever signs autographs for fans before a game against the Las Vegas Aces at T-Mobile Arena July 2, 2024, in Las Vegas.  (Ethan Miller/Getty Images)


The Fever are no stranger to sellout crowds and record viewership, but the WNBA has seen an unprecedented spike in popularity since Clark entered the league. 

May marked the highest attended opening month in 26 years and the most-watched start to a season ever across every major network. 

The Aces, the defending back-to-back champions, also became the first team to sell out every home game, including a September game against the Chicago Sky at T-Mobile Arena.

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Caitlin Clark of the Indiana Fever shoots a 3-pointer against the Las Vegas Aces in the second quarter of a game at T-Mobile Arena July 2, 2024, in Las Vegas. The Aces defeated the Fever 88-69.  (Ethan Miller/Getty Images)


“What’s happening now in women’s basketball is confirmation of what we’ve always known: The demand is there, and women’s sports is a valuable investment,” Chief Growth Officer Colie Edison said in a statement last month. 

“We’re encouraged by growing engagement across all our verticals, especially as we welcome new and diverse audiences into our fandom. The WNBA continues to experience sustained growth as our league embraces this heightened momentum.”

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