Fever vs Sun Odds, Picks, Prediction | Best Bet for Caitlin Clark’s WNBA Debut

Fever vs Sun Odds, Picks, Prediction | Best Bet for Caitlin Clark’s WNBA Debut article feature image

Pictured: Caitlin Clark of the Fever and Alyssa Thomas of the Sun as we preview the Fever vs Sun WNBA season opener and the latest Fever vs Sun odds plus our picks, prediction and best bet for Clark’s WNBA debut.

  • The latest Fever vs Sun odds have Caitlin Clark's team as big underdogs in her WNBA debut.
  • After opening as 5.5-point favorites, the Sun are now -8 or -8.5 across the market against the Fever on Tuesday.

Fever vs Sun Odds, Picks, Prediction

Tuesday, May 14
7:30 p.m. ET
Fever Odds
Sun Odds
Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute WNBA odds here.

Caitlin Clark makes her WNBA professional debut on Tuesday night against the Connecticut Sun. The WNBA was very cheeky when scheduling the first game of Clark’s career, putting her against a team that has notoriously held a chip on its shoulder for being perpetually overlooked.

Now, in the 2024 season opener, all eyes will be on Clark. You think the Sun might take that personally?

Given that my current stance has been to fade Clark while the hype is a bit too high, it’s probably not shocking that I will be on the Connecticut side of things, but there’s more to this handicap than a blind fade of Clark Mania, so let’s dive in with our Fever vs Sun picks, prediction and best bet.

Indiana Fever

My Clark fades aren't simply Haterade for the biggest name in the sport. There is historical precedence for how challenging the transition to the WNBA is, especially for guards. I wrote about the history of top drafted guards transitioning to the W over the offseason, and the most telling part of my research was the team win-loss. In the time period assessed (past 15 years), not a single guard taken in the top three had played for a team with more than 14 wins in their rookie season.

Now, I actually do have the Fever projected to go over that number, in part because I think Clark is a better prospect than all of those guard prospects over the past 15 years, and also because she is coming to to a team closer to contention than any of the others. In Aliyah Boston, she has the No. 1 pick from last year, and a player who ranked sixth in the league in PER and seventh in the league in win shares in her rookie season. 

She’s also joined by NaLyssa Smith (the No. 2 overall pick in 2022 who averaged 15.5 ppg last year), and Kelsey Mitchell (18.1 ppg over her past four seasons). The roster is talented, and the long-term future couldn’t be brighter.

However, in the short-term, this is a team being priced nearly on par with the Sun on opening night. I would have the Sun -7.5.

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Connecticut Sun

This Sun team looks a little different than the last time we saw them, when they bowed out in the WNBA semifinals against the New York Liberty, 3-1.

Back for Connecticut is Briona Jones, who ranked third in the WNBA in win shares in her last full season (2022). She is one of the most efficient players in the game, which will be a massive help for Alyssa Thomas, who finished third in the MVP vote last season, but struggled with efficiency at times. 

The Sun still have Thomas’ wife, DeWanna Bonner, lining up at the three. Bonner is also doing a bit of a Benjamin Button thing, coming off her best seasons in years at the age of 35.

It’s the backcourt where the Sun face the most questions, with Tiffany Hayes retired and Natisha Hiedeman off to Minnesota. In their place will likely be a combination of Tiffany Mitchell, Moriah Jefferson, Tyasha Harris and DiJonai Carrington. There is skill there, but there are also unknowns, and no ceiling as high as Hayes’ in my opinion. 

However, the return of Jones is enough to mostly offset the backcourt losses when it comes to power rating the Sun. I have them as around a +3 net rating side as we start the season (they were 27-13 with a +4.4 net rating last season). The Fever, I make around -1.5, especially as the pieces still have to come together. If we add in three points for home court on opening night (adjusted up a tiny bit from standard 2.5 points), we get to that 7.5 number that I make this game. 

Fever vs. Sun

Betting Pick & Prediction

As such, I was on the Sun -5.5, and would still lean that way at -7.5. 

Ironically, it’s a player prop under for Connecticut that is my favorite bet for this game. I'll potentially be looking to fade Thomas’ rebounds and points+rebounds+assists based on the numbers the books post. 

Jones being back should eat notably into both Thomas' points and rebounds and, per pbpstats.com, her assists actually aren’t positively correlated with Jones being back, because it’s just less usage overall for Thomas.

As for the Sun, I explained that pick on Action Island:

"My first best bet is the Sun, -7.5. First of all, I've just got to kind of tip my cap to the WNBA schedule makers. I think it's genuinely kind of funny that they scheduled, Dano (Mataya) made reference, the person who brought chartered flights to the W, they're going to be rolling out the red carpets, Caitlin is getting all of the attention.

"Who does she get first? The team that has been, for like the last half-decade, saying 'disrespect' with the ct at the end. They feel overlooked as is, now they play the biggest name to come to the league in a long time. At their home stadium, it's the first sellout for the Sun first home-opener sellout since 2003. That crew is going to be fired up.

"But there's more to this thank just narrative. I think that if you look at these two teams, where they were last year, now we'll talk through what changes have happened, but if we look at what they were last year, the Sun were about a +4.5 new rating team, the Fever were about -5.

"Obviously there have been some changes. On the Sun side of things, they lost Tiffany Hayes, they lost Natisha Hiedeman in the back court, however they brought in some really fun options. They brought in Tiffany Mitchell, they brought in Rachel Banham, they brought in Moriah Jefferson, she's hurt right now, but that's a long-term back-court option for them. They're also going to be giving more minutes to DiJonai Carrington, Ty Harris, so they've got a lot of options. But the biggest thing, they bring back Brionna Jones

"They were the third-best team in the W last year without the player who, the previous season, was the third-best player in the W by win shares. Brionna Jones, incredible front-court player. She's going to be working her way back off an Achilles injury.

"Fever, on the hand, they missed the playoffs with that -5 net rating. Now, they bring in Caitlin Clark, obviously, they bring in Katie Lou Samuelson, they're a year older, they're definitely a better team, I just think the market has overreacted here a little bit.

"I make this Sun -9, maybe even 8.5, in that range."

Unfortunately, this is now past Sun -7.5 at most books, so our best bet is to play the Thomas player prop. But for even more bets on Fever vs Sun, head over to Caitlin Clark Props Odds: Best Bets, Picks for Points, Rebounds, Assists, 3-Pointers in Fever vs Sun.

Pick: Sun -7.5 | Alyssa Thomas Under PRA

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