Washington Mystics veteran Elena Delle Donne had a message for the WNBA officials after battling in a 80–74 loss to the Connecticut Sun on Sunday. She was fined an undisclosed amount for the comments, according to Kareem Copeland of The Washington Post.
"I'm just going to say it," the two-time league MVP said. "I'm so sick of being treated like a rookie with calls. If I get fined–whatever. I've been through too many back surgeries to–whatever. I just keep attacking, hoping that it'll change. Hopefully, it'll change next game, but there's really nothing you can do in those moments."
Delle Donne finished with 19 points, 11 rebounds and two blocks in the loss. The two-time MVP was also hit with five personal fouls, landing in foul trouble when the game came down to the wire with less than a minute remaining.
Austin, who is only in her second WNBA season, scored a career-high 21 points, adding 11 rebounds on Sunday. After being called for four personal fouls on Sunday, she nodded her head in agreement while Delle Donne spoke against the officiating.
Notable Sun players also landed in foul trouble, as Alyssa Thomas and Brionna Jones both had five fouls. While Delle Done feels that officials missed fouls committed against her, she's not going to let it alter her game.
"I just keep attacking, in the end I hope that because I can elevate and jump over people, you can see that my arm is getting hit. I just keep attacking and hoping that it'll change. Hopefully it'll change next game, but there's really nothing you can do in those moments. You just, when you see something, you've gotta still attack it. And thank goodness for Shakira [Austin], who stepped up and took over."
Ideally, officials would call every player objectively. But if there were a place for veteran, All-Star or MVP bias, Delle Donne's candidacy for the biased whistle is as strong as it could be.
Through three games, the six-time All-Star is averaging 19.7 points, 7.3 rebounds, 3.3 assists and 1.3 blocks. Last season, she averaged 17.2 points and 6.3 rebounds. It was her first full year since dealing with numerous back injuries beginning in 2019, when she helped lead the franchise to a title.
In October of 2022, she dropped a signature shoe with Nike, inspired by Lyme Disease, which she has battled for over a decade.
When the Mystics met the Sun again on Tuesday, she led Washington with 27 points. Her performance wasn't enough for the Mystics to secure the rematch, which the Sun won 88-81.
Next, Delle Donne and the Mystics will look for a win on Friday when they visit the Chicago Sky.