The WNBA is looking to add expansion teams as the popularity of women's basketball grows, and SF could be the next city up as the league hopes to add two more teams by 2025.
The Bay Area is a better-than-most market for women’s basketball, as the perennial powerhouse Stanford women’s basketball team has pre-built a fandom for the women’s game around these parts. So as the increasingly popular WNBA looks to expand its league (and revenue), the Bay Area seems a logical choice.
As such, KTVU reports the WNBA is considering the Bay Area a finalist in their expansion plans, citing a report from The Athletic saying the Golden State Warriors organization would run the WNBA team, should it be awarded to the region.
Th Athletic says the Warriors are “finalizing” an agreement, which sounds like talks are indeed advanced.
"[We] look forward to the possibility of being part of the league’s expansion plans," KTVU says the Warriors organization wrote in an email. "However, it would be premature to assume any potential agreement has been finalized."
The WNBA has already indicated it wants to expand the 12-team league to 14 teams by its 2025 season. (The WNBA season generally starts in May of a given year.)
KTVU adds that “Bringing a professional sports team to the Bay Area would be a boon, especially since the Raiders football team left for Las Vegas, and the A's baseball team are threatening to do the same.” Yeah, but. The proposed team would not play in Oakland, it would play at the Chase Center. So it’s just speculation that the East Bay would go wild for a team that plays in San Francisco.
Meanwhile, that developer group that's hoping to redevelop the Oakland Coliseum property, the African American Sports and Entertainment Group, was hoping to lure a WNBA team there, but that might have to wait until the league's next expansion.
This proposed WNBA team would be affiliated with the Warriors, and likely have a similar naming convention and team colors, as we see with the WNBA’s Indiana Fever, Los Angeles Sparks, Minnesota Lynx, New York Liberty, and Phoenix Mercury. Other WNBA teams are not at all affiliated with NBA counterparts (Atlanta Dream, Chicago Sky, Connecticut Sun, Dallas Wings, Las Vegas Aces, Seattle Storm, and Washington Mystics).
If you want to hop on this WNBA bandwagon and get a crash course, the WNBA playoffs are currently down to the final four teams. The New York Liberty play the Connecticut Sun in the Eastern Conference Finals Friday at 4:30 p.m. PT in a series currently tied 1-1, and the Las Vegas Aces play the Dallas Wings Friday at 9:30 p.m. PT in a series that the Aces lead 2-0.
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