Antonio Brown Launches Controversial Attack at Caitlin Clark, This Time With an Ex-NBA Legend in His Crosshairs

Published 03/04/2024, 5:12 AM EST

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‘Ponytail Pete.’ They may be more than 50 years apart, but ever since people realized how strikingly similar Caitlin Clark’s game is to Pete Maravich’s, there was no escaping the comparisons. And the 22-year-old Iowa Hawkeyes guard has embraced them. Ever since Clark burst into the scene, she’s been breaking records, rewriting the history of NCAA basketball. So, when comparisons to the NBA legend who once held the NCAA all-time scoring record arose, she welcomed them. However, former Pittsburg Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown may have taken it a little too far.

Until last night, Clark was chasing Pete Maravich’s NCAA all-time scoring record. But as she passed that 3,667-point figure and led the Hawkeyes to victory, she became the new benchmark. To celebrate and honor this remarkable achievement, Bleacher Report tweeted a side-by-side of Clark and Maravich with a quote the Iowa Hawkeyes guard said to The Salt Lake Tribune. 

“I saw somebody called me like Ponytail Pete or something like that. I thought that was kind of funny,” she said. But on being compared to one of the greatest NCAA players in history, she added, “I think [it’s] just a tremendous compliment.” However, it wasn’t this that caught Antonio Brown’s attention (and subsequently, his remark). It was Clark and Maravich’s pictures. Brown reposted the tweet and wrote, “Update: that’s the same dude.”


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Brown’s career reached incredible heights during his stint with the Steelers. However, his time in the NFL was overshadowed by a series of controversies and off-field rumors and incidents. Like most of his other controversial takes, this one about Caitlin Clark also sparked widespread backlash. 

The tweets in response to his remark ranged from statements like, “This ain’t a good look, man” to “Chill, AB. She ain’t do nothing to no one.” One X user even took a direct jab at the former wide receiver, writing, “She’s got more money than you, bro, you’re broke.” Considering how widely loved Caitlin Clark has become over the years, people were defending her left, right, and center.

Brown’s consistent act of overstepping his boundaries with unnecessary controversy hasn’t gone down well with fans of either sport. But when it comes to Caitlin Clark, this isn’t the first time he’s received backlash. Surprisingly (or unsurprisingly), this was not the first time Brown disparaged Clark. 

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Antonio Brown and his Mel Gibson saga involving Caitlin Clark

A few weeks ago, Caitlin Clark broke the NCAA women’s all-time scoring record, surpassing Kelsey Plum’s previous record. She did this by scoring a whopping 49 points against the Michigan Wolverines. When FOX College Hoop posted the achievement on X, AB reposted it and wrote, “B**** look like Mel Gibson.” Needless to say, numerous users were quite unhappy and ensured AB knew it.

With all the backlash he was getting, the former Steeler clarified, “It was a joke entertainment.” However, that wasn’t enough for fans to let go of what he previously wrote. But it looks like Brown didn’t either and didn’t learn from his mistakes. Given the season Caitlin Clark is having, it didn’t come as a surprise when the 22-year-old announced her plans to enter the 2024 WNBA draft. Just as Clark took her opportunity, so did Brown.


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He posted a picture of the Hawkeyes’ guard and wrote, “Lethal Weapon 5 #MelGibson,” once again drawing a comparison with the forthcoming movie’s director and actor. But he didn’t stop there. After Clark broke the all-time scoring record on March 3, he posted an animation of Mel Gibson and wrote, “Congrats to Caitlin Clark on becoming all-time leading scorer.” 


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Despite clarifying that his remarks are just a joke, many find his tweets about Caitlin Clark plain offensive. What do you make of Antonio Brown’s comments about the NCAA’s all-time leading scorer?

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Written by:

Tanushree Bhowmick


One take at a time

Tanushree Bhowmick is a Bodybuilding Writer at EssentiallySports. Her Master's degree in English literature is reflected in every carefully crafted sentence she writes. A lifelong fan of action movies, Tanushree has a keen interest in covering Arnold Schwarzenegger’s newsletters.
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Edited by:

Amal Joyce