An ownership group led by Golden State Warriors owner Joe Lacob is set to bring a WNBA franchise to the Bay Area, according to The Athletic.
A deal between Warriors brass and the league has yet to be finalized, but the two sides are reportedly close, and an official announcement could come as soon as early October.
A league spokesperson told The Athletic, “discussions with potential new ownership groups continue to head in the right direction.” The WNBA Board of Governors would need to approve any new team.
The plan calls for the expansion team to play its games at Chase Center and be headquartered at the Warriors’ practice facility in Oakland — a major appeal to the new ownership group, as it would mean its facilities would get used year-round.
It’s unclear when the team would begin play, but WNBA commissioner Cathy Engelbert previously said the league has been aiming to add new teams in time for the 2025 season.
Expansion has been a long time coming for the league, as the last team to join was the Atlanta Dream in 2008. The Bay Area franchise would push the league to 13 teams.
Assuming the deal to add the new team is finalized, the Bay Area could add two new women’s sports teams in two years: Bay FC is scheduled to begin play in the NWSL next season after a $125 million commitment from investment firm Sixth Street.