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LSU star gets backlash from WNBA veterans for ‘hang it up’ rant

Alexis Morris was selected by the Connecticut Sun in the 2023 WNBA Draft but cut before the start of the season. (Vincent Carchietta/USA TODAY Sports)

Former LSU basketball star Alexis Morris was met with backlash Wednesday after she took to Twitter to criticize WNBA veterans for remaining in the league too long and taking up roster spots.

The 5-9 guard was selected in the 2023 draft by the Connecticut Sun but was waived by the team last week, adding her name to the long list of roster cuts this preseason.

In a series of now-deleted tweets, Morris – who previously had spoken about the difficulties of transitioning to the WNBA – argued that if roster spots cannot be made available to the rookies then teams should “cut the vets.” But she also put some of that blame onto the veterans themselves.

“The vets gotta know when to cut the net, and pass the torch bro,” she wrote. “If you knocking at 35, hang it up and I mean WIRED HANGER ‘Hang it up.'”

Morris’ tweets caused a stir on social media, with WNBA veterans pointing to their own long and winding roads in the league.

“It’s clear people don’t understand how much we respect people’s journeys and the grind,” Los Angeles Sparks guard Lexie Brown wrote

As Minnesota Lynx guard Kayla McBride noted, rookies should be aware that everyone around them is “on their own journey too,” even if McBride doesn’t usually talk about her own.

“Don’t speak on someone else to make yourself feel better,” she wrote. “We all got stories. Just go write yours.”

McBride also noted in a later tweet that she isn’t “coming for anyone personally” and that the Lynx rookies, a group that includes No. 2 overall pick Diamond Miller, have been “great.”

“As a whole the WNBA (is) fighting for respect and each of our stories look different. And should be respected,” she wrote. “Respect the grind. Respect those around you. It’ll get you a long, long way.”

A number of the league’s rookies have been cut from WNBA rosters already, with just 18 out of 36 draftees remaining on WNBA rosters as of Thursday morning. That number could diminish as teams finalize rosters.

With just 144 roster spots available, many players have been calling for expansion in order to help with both development of players and the league.

Sydney Colson has been cut multiple times but currently is a member of the Las Vegas Aces. On Wednesday, she noted a shift in the league compared to a few seasons ago, when more veterans had been cut to save cap space.

“The interesting part is that several vets (who were still capable players) didn’t make rosters years ago because of cap space and it was cheaper to keep rookies,” she wrote. “As someone who’s been cut several, and I mean SEVERAL, times… it’s tough and not a great feeling, but it doesn’t mean it has to be the end of your career. Grind, have a chip on your shoulder, and work to get back.”

Still, other players pointed out the lack of support that rookies receive. Former WNBA player and No. 3 overall pick Devereaux Peters noted that her first four years in the league “were absolute hell” but she was able to figure it out.

“I was blessed with vets that went out of their way to help me gain my footing,” she wrote. “But also a great deal was me operating in a way I wouldn’t have preferred. But I think a lot of these younger players in general don’t really understand how this league works and we should be helping them too. Because not everyone has players to reach out to, to help them along.”