April 24th, 2024

WNBA expansion to Toronto a possibility with efforts in motion: reports

By The Canadian Press on March 5, 2024.

Las Vegas Aces forward Alysha Clark (7) goes up for a basket during the first half in Game 4 of a WNBA basketball final playoff series against the New York Liberty, Wednesday, Oct. 18, 2023, in New York. According to multiple reports, Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment chairman Larry Tanenbaum, with his holding company Kilmer Group, will be in pursuit of a WNBA team for 2025. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Frank Franklin II

Another chance for Toronto to get a WNBA team may have arrived.

According to multiple reports, Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment chairman Larry Tanenbaum is in pursuit of a WNBA team for 2025 through his holding company Kilmer Group.

Kilmer Sports Venture appointed long-time European soccer executive Ivan Gazidis to lead the new organization on Tuesday. The venture will look for sports and entertainment opportunities around the world.

Both CBC and the Star have said former Raptors vice-president of basketball operations and player development, Teresa Resch, who left her post with the NBA team this week, will be a part of the initiative.

The Golden State Warriors were awarded a WNBA franchise for 2025 back in October, the first expansion team since 2008 and the 13th team in the league.

Scotiabank Arena played host to a sold-out WNBA pre-season game in May 2023, and at the time WNBA Commissioner Cathy Englebert said Toronto was on a shortlist of expansion cities.

However, according to reports, a potential MLSE bid for a team in Toronto was opposed by Edward Rogers, chairman of Rogers Communications.

Rogers is a part owner of MLSE.

– With files from The Associated Press

This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 5, 2024.

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