Caitlin Clark’s Bringing Bettors to Sports Betting, Fans to WNBA Games in Droves

Optimove Insights finds that games involving the Indiana Fever star have seen a 380% increase in wagers over the baseline game.

Brad Senkiw - News Editorat
Brad Senkiw • News Editor
Jul 9, 2024 • 18:03 ET • 4 min read
Caitlin Clark
Photo By - USA TODAY Sports

Caitlin Clark is driving wagering markets in the sports betting industry, and there are new numbers to back it up. 

According to betting behavior analysis conducted by Optimove Insights, games involving the Indiana Fever's first overall selection in the 2024 WNBA draft saw a 380% increase in wagers compared to the baseline game between the Seattle Storm and Washington Mystics. 

Optimove analyzed over 15 million bets on 43 games to show Clark's huge impact on regular WNBA markets and player props. 

“If we compared the first 20 games of the NBA and WNBA from the most recent season, Caitlin Clark would rank in the top 10 of player props,” BetMGM data analyst John Ewing told Covers.

Star power

Optimove’s analysis also found that the highest increase in wagers was 544% in the Fever’s game against the Connecticut Sun, a team tied for the best record in the WNBA this season. 

The league overall has seen a nice bump in betting, with even non-Clark games having seen a 162% rise over the baseline. 

“Even before Caitlin Clark became the first rookie in WNBA history to record a triple-double in her July 6th game against the New York Liberty – her presence has been a major factor in boosting betting activity,” Rony Vexelman, VP of marketing at Optimove, said.

“She highlights the importance of star power in driving fan engagement and betting interest. Sophisticated sports betting operators and marketers pay close attention to key players like Caitlin Clark, as their influence extends beyond the game and into the broader betting ecosystem.” 

Fans in the stands

Aside from sports betting, Clark has helped the WNBA and the Fever grow in overall popularity. 

According to ESPN, average attendance is over 9,300 per game, the highest it's been since the 1990s. Two WNBA games have already surpassed 20,000 fans, which has only happened six times since the league began in 1997.  

Indiana ranked next-to-last in the league in attendance last year, averaging a little over 4,000 fans per game. This season, the Fever leads the WNBA with an average of over 16,800 showing up for home games.   

March Madness awareness 

This is the second time this year that Optimove has released a sports betting analysis on Clark. 

While studying over four million bets placed from March 29 through April 9, the NCAA women’s tournament games involving Clark and her former school the Iowa Hawkeyes saw average betting increase by 540% compared to the baseline game.

The NCAA’s all-time leading scorer helped lead the Hawkeyes to a runner-up finish in the March Madness tournament. The championship game against South Carolina saw a 540% increase in bets over the baseline game between the Gamecocks and Oregon State.  

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