HoopsHype WNBA rumors

February 5, 2014 Updates
February 4, 2014 Updates
January 10, 2014 Updates
January 3, 2014 Updates

The Golden State Warriors on Friday confirmed their interest in operating a WNBA franchise, a day after the league announced that the Los Angeles Sparks ownership group has ceased operations of the team and laid off all front-office employees. The Bay Area's NBA franchise also confirmed that it has been in contact with the WNBA about the possibility of taking over the Sparks franchise. The Sparks are in limbo as the league seeks new ownership, and league president Laurel Richie confirmed Thursday night that the WNBA has made contact with groups who have previously expressed interest in running a franchise. ESPN.com

November 12, 2013 Updates

The Minneapolis City Council has approved an agreement with the Minnesota Timberwolves and Lynx to renovate the Target Center, one of the NBA's oldest venues. The $97 million renovation of the 23-year-old, city-owned Target Center includes a redesign of the outdated exterior, additional clubs and gathering spaces, as well as improved traffic flow. The Timberwolves and Lynx will pay $43 million toward the project. The city will contribute $48.5 million and building manager Anschutz Entertainment Group Facilities will pay $5.5 million. As part of the deal, the Timberwolves will extend their lease at Target Center through 2032. The design of the building will take place this winter, with construction expected to begin after the 2013-14 Timberwolves season. Boston Herald

October 11, 2013 Updates

Lang Greene: Congratulations to the Minnesota Lynx on winning the WNBA championship. Also, major respect to the Atlanta Dream for making that journey. Twitter @LangGreene

August 22, 2013 Updates
August 4, 2013 Updates

A financial website called "24/7 Wall Street" predicts the WNBA will disappear by next year — after David Stern steps down as NBA commissioner. The logic is Stern's strong support of the women's league (six of its 12 teams are bankrolled in part by the NBA counterpart in the same city; all receive logistical support) and his utter control as commissioner have combined to keep the WNBA afloat despite poor TV ratings and declining attendance. The question is whether his successor, Adam Silver, has either the passion or the power to keep the WNBA afloat if NBA owners balk at continued investment. An official of at least one non-NBA-supported team, the Chicago Sky, says that won't happen because Silver has shown he also cares deeply about the WNBA. Chicago Tribune

May 24, 2013 Updates

The WNBA is riding high these days, eagerly awaiting the debut of college megastar Brittney Griner in her first pro game Monday. Then it will fold in a handful of months. At least that's the thought process of financial website 24/7 Wall St, which is picking the WNBA as one of 10 U.S. entities to disappear by next year. It cites circumstantial evidence -- NBA Commissioner David Stern, long a protectorate of the WNBA, is retiring next February -- and also looks at some unfavorable trends. Los Angeles Times

March 28, 2013 Updates

The WNBA has signed a six-year extension with ESPN that is separate from the network's NBA deal. Sources said the deal is worth $12M per year, which amounts to about $1M per WNBA team, and runs through the '22 season. Sports Business Daily

February 18, 2013 Updates

It was not our intention to play "Gotcha" with the greatest flopper the sport has ever known. We just wanted to gauge how far he’s come since his Detroit Pistons days, when he could incite a riot in a dozen ways, most of them involving melodrama — a flop, a shove, a covert elbow, a fake outrage. Chuck Daly, as he often did, put it best once: "Laimbeer," the great coach said, "could drive people insane and then just walk away — he was like Gandhi." "People disliked me because I never went away," Laimbeer corrected. "I was always there, and people couldn’t stand it. I was an irritating person to play against, and I’d get under your skin." Newark Star-Ledger

No one ever doubted his talent for this. Check out how many Laimbeer videos there are on YouTube, and then count how many are tagged with "fight," "flop," "cheap shot" or "hard foul." Spoiler alert: The answers are "3,700" and "more than half." And a large number involve him getting punched in the face by a 1980s wing of the Hall of Fame: Charles Barkley, Michael Jordan, Larry Bird, Robert Parish, et al. Oh, and Isiah Thomas, if we’re including practices. There should be some kind of medal for that. "The Bad Boys moniker will live forever," Laimbeer said triumphantly. "You see they’re now doing a documentary on those Pistons teams? It was our identity, and we’re proud of it. But no, there’s no medal for getting punched. The real badge of honor is the championship." Newark Star-Ledger

October 26, 2012 Updates

Former Detroit Pistons' great Bill Laimbeer has returned to the head coaching ranks. It's just not in the league he was hoping to do it in. Laimbeer, who helped the Pistons win back-to-back NBA championships in 1989-90, was named head coach and general manager of the WNBA's New York Liberty Thursday. Laimbeer is no stranger to the WNBA. He coached the Detroit Shock from 2002-09 before leaving the club to become an assistant coach with the Minneosta Timberwolves. Booth Newspapers

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