WNBA looking for new ownership for the Los Angeles Sparks

Kirby Lee-US PRESSWIRE

The Los Angeles Sparks franchise is currently at a crossroads after owner Paula Madison notified league president Laurel Richie that she would be unable to continue running the team just before the Christmas holiday.

According to an article on the Los Angeles Times, all employees, including General Manager Penny Toler, President Vincent Malcolm, and Head Coach Carol Ross were laid off, effective December 31, 2013.  Sparks players however will continue to receive their salaries and benefits.

Currently, the WNBA is searching for new ownership of the team.  Richie has said that there are parties interested in assuming the team.  But it is questionable as to whether new owners can be found in time, whether the team can stay in LA or relocate to another market.  If this can't be resolved really soon, the franchise may then fold.

The Los Angeles Sparks have been one of the league's founding and premier franchises, having been in operation since 1997.  The Sparks won two championships in 2001 and 2002 and also made the Finals a third time in 2003.  The team's most notable player of all time is Lisa Leslie, who was one of the league's long time ambassadors and all time greats.  Today, Candace Parker is the face of the team, where she was the Rookie of the Year in 2008, and also won two Most Valuable Player awards in 2008 and in 2013.

Comment below on what you think is next for the Sparks' future, for better, or for worse.

H/T to pilight for the FanShot of the breaking news which you can read here.

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