WNBA commissioner says Sacramento on list of locations for expansion team

Oct 7, 2023, 6:00 AM | Updated: Oct 9, 2023, 10:26 am

Yolanda Griffith #33 of the Sacramento Monarchs fights for rebound position against Ruth Riley #00 ...

Yolanda Griffith #33 of the Sacramento Monarchs fights for rebound position against Ruth Riley #00 of the Detroit Shock during Game 3 of the 2006 WNBA Finals September 3, 2006 at ARCO Arena in Sacramento, California.

WNBA Commissioner Kathy Engelbert welcomed the league’s 13th team on Thursday, announcing an expansion team in the Bay Area.

The yet-to-be-named franchise is expected to join the league in the 2025 season. Engelbert also mentioned wanting to add a 14th team in the coming years as well.

At Thursday’s press conference, a reporter asked if Sacramento, once home to a WNBA franchise, is on the list for being the home to that 14th team.

“The nice thing about growing a women’s sports property, is we have a lot of cities interested, Sacramento is definitely one of them,” Engelbert said, adding she’s visited Portland, Denver, and Toronto as possible cities where an expansion team could live. “But yes, Sacramento is one of those on the list.”

Currently, the WNBA consists of 12 teams. The league has not had an expansion team since 2008 when the Atlanta Dream was added. In 2018, the San Antonio Stars relocated to Las Vegas and changed their name to Aces.

At its height, the league had 16 teams, one of which being the Sacramento Monarchs. The Monarchs won a championship in 2005 but unfortunately were out of the league by 2009.

Earlier this year, KCRA’s Michelle Dapper spoke with Kings owner Vivek Ranadivé about this same possibility. He said it would be great to bring them back to Sacramento.

One of the original 16 teams, the Monarchs dissolved in 2009 after winning two conference championships and one WBNA championship in 2005. When Sacramento Kings owner Vivek Ranadivé bought the team nearly 10 years ago, there were rumors of possibly reviving the Monarchs, too, but nothing materialized.

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