Who is Christie Sides? Meet the Indiana Fever coach looking to lead Caitlin Clark, Aliyah Boston to playoffs

There’s a youthful revolution taking place in Nap City.

It’s been quietly brewing over the past few seasons, surfacing as prospect after prospect made Indiana their home.

Then, a freight train came through and shook everything up: the Fever selected Aliyah Boston and Caitlin Clark as their No. 1 overall picks in back-to-back drafts, accelerating the momentum already cultivated by Kelsey Mitchell and NaLyssa Smith in preceding years.

The future is bright in Indianapolis, but just who will be leading the troops out as they attempt to conjure up magic across the hardwood floor?

The Fever enlisted the services of longtime WNBA assistant Christie ahead of the 2023 campaign. She’ll get another bite at the cherry in 2024 as she attempts to turn what has long been considered a hapless franchise into a winning one.

Here’s what you need to know about the Fever’s boss hoping to lead her side to basketball’s promised land sooner rather than later.

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Who is Christie Sides?

Christie Sides is the head coach of the Indiana Fever, having stepped into the role in 2023 after spending more than 20 years serving as an assistant at various levels of the sport.

The 47-year-old is a Louisiana native who was a standout player in her pomp, winning state player of the year honors in high school. She subsequently played ball at Ole Miss and Louisiana Tech, helping lead the latter to a Final Four appearance.

Following her collegiate career, Sides went straight into the coaching ranks, first working at a local high school before joining her alma mater Louisiana Tech in 2004.

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Over the next 20 years, Sides would make stops in Moscow, Chicago, Northwestern, Indiana, Louisiana-Monroe, and Atlanta, serving in various positions across the coaching bench.

Sides got her chance ahead of the 2023 campaign, rejoining the Fever, this time as their lead tactician.

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In her first season, the Fever went 13-27, the worst record in the Eastern Conference. However, a look at her demeanor on the sidelines indicated that she was fully engaged in the team’s efforts on and off the floor. She’s already developed a reputation for grandiose gestures to showcase her frustration or delight with in-game events, even occasionally hurtling her glasses toward the Earth when the moment presents itself.

“It’s not over the top. We have a young team, so we need the energy. Actually, it gets us old heads going,” Indiana wing Victoria Vivians said, according to The Next’s Tony East.

In terms of a tactical game plan, Sides’ teams pride themselves on denying entry into the middle of the floor on the defensive end. It’s had mixed results so far — such is the case when you’re rooted near the bottom of the league table. However, with Aliyah Boston surveilling Indiana’s paint, things could be flourishing very soon.

The offense should be there for Sides and the Fever, too. Clark, Boston, Smith, and Mitchell are about as formidable as they come on that side of the ball, all projecting as 15-plus-point scorers. Clark’s gravity as a creative hub — in addition to her shot-making skill — should blend kindly with the scoring skill that surrounds her on the roster.

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Couple that with Sides’ commitment to the other side of the ball, and the Fever could be making some noise sooner than you might think.

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