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Saturday, July 20, 2024
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Portland Vies to Add WNBA Team, Keep Trail Blazers

  • Sen. Ron Wyden wrote a letter calling on the WNBA to return to Portland.
  • The league had a team there from 2000-02.
Ron-Wyden
MADELEINE COOK / STATESMAN JOURNAL

Portland is vying for a WNBA team with the help of one of its federal representatives.

Sen. Ron Wyden wrote a letter to WNBA commissioner Cathy Engelbert and NBA commissioner Adam Silver, saying that a Portland WNBA team would be a “slam dunk success for the city and the league.”

  • Portland had a WNBA team, the Fire, for three seasons from 2000-02.
  • Wyden wrote that both Portland and Oregon have “proven to be a hotbed for women’s sports.”
  • The city’s NWSL team, the Thorns, topped the league in attendance last year with 14,391 per game and, as of Monday, are second to Angel City FC this year with 15,543 per game.

Wyden alluded to concerns that the NBA’s Portland Trail Blazers could leave the city at the end of his missive: 

“Please know that I stand ready to offer whatever help I can provide to protect and build a lasting commitment to the Trail Blazers’ continued presence in Portland – a commitment that would also be solidified with a WNBA team in my hometown.

Fierce Competition

The WNBA, which has 12 teams, is looking to add two more. The Oakland City Council passed a resolution calling on the WNBA to bring a team there. The league is also believed to be looking at Nashville, Philadelphia, San Francisco, and Toronto.

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