Warwick evoked a few classic tracks for her clap back, and Knight took it in stride!
Dionne Warwick had the perfect response after she was mistaken for Gladys Knight during ESPN's broadcast of the U.S. Open -- and one of the commentators involved says there's a perfectly good explanation for the nationally televised gaffe.
Warwick took to Twitter on Friday and shared her reaction after she was mistaken for the Empress of Soul by ESPN broadcasters Mary Carillo and Chanda Rubin during Serena Williams' upset win Thursday night against the world's No. 2 player, Anett Kontaveit, at Arthur Ashe Stadium in Flushing, New York.
Throughout the match, cameras had been panning to the star-studded crowd. But this time there was a mixup, as cameras showed two women in the stands. Carillo noted, "Gladys Knight" was in attendance. Rubin seemed in awe and also exclaimed, "Gladys Knight!" Problem was, it wasn't Knight. It was actually Warwick.
Warwick evoked two of her classic songs -- "Walk on By" and "I Say a Little Prayer" -- as well as Knight's classic, "Midnight Train to Georgia" for her epic clap back. Fans loved the response. One person replied, "The Queen of shade lol" while another person said, "OMG! I almost spit my coffee."
Knight took to Instagram on Thursday and took the mistake as a huge badge of honor.
“Dionne and I have been sisters for a long time and I hope she is as honored to be mistaken for me as I would be her," she said. "I’m sure it was an honest mistake. It was a blessing to be in the house to see Serena’s greatness.”
So, what exactly happened? Rubin, a former perennial tennis player with a 2002 win over then No. 1 world-ranked Williams under her belt, spoke to ET's Kevin Frazier and was adamant that "there's no chance that I would mistake Dionne Warwick for Gladys Knight."
For starters, Rubin says she's a diehard Knight fan. So much so, Rubin says she has a picture of her in her office. Rubin calls the photo one of her favorites, while adding she always relishes the opportunity to speak with Knight when they've had encounters at various events.
And now, the explanation.
"When we are commentating -- as I was doing last night in a booth -- at that moment when all this happened, I was watching the court, not noticing our program monitor," Rubin recalled. "And so, mid-thought, my colleague [Carillo] mentioned there's Gladys Knight. And we had been seeing her on the jumbotron. And so when she said Gladys, I echoed her immediately without seeing what was on the program monitor."
"When we put the picture back on [the] program [monitor] after the point was played," Rubin continued, "I realized, 'Is this the picture we said was Gladys Knight?' That is not [Gladys Knight]. That is Dionne Warwick. So, we kind of had a laugh about it in the booth, real-time. We kept it light and we kept it moving. Definitely did not think I would wake up and kind of have it trending. I love trending, not necessarily for this reason, but it was just crazy to think that it was made into a much bigger deal than it actually was at the time."