ESPN's Michelle Smith: WNBA also in contact with a group that would keep the Sparks in Los Angeles

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

There may be an ownership group out there who would keep the Sparks in Los Angeles after all.

ESPN's Michelle Smith wrote an article today which stated that someone within the NBA's Los Angeles Lakers organization helped get a possible ownership group who would like to buy the Sparks and keep the team in Southern California in contact with the WNBA.  The remainder of the article pretty much summed up Golden State Warriors owner Joe Lacob's interest in the team and passion for women's basketball in his radio interview yesterday on KNBR-AM.

But assuming that there is really an ownership group out there which would keep the team in LA, this changes the dynamics of the Sparks' future in the coming weeks.

First, this basically tells us that Joe Lacob and the Warriors are NOT the first choice for the WNBA, in particular for a franchise that is a perennial winner, and in a large market.  Keeping the Sparks in LA is more desirable than moving them, at least in and of itself.

Second, based on what was in Smith's article, I would assume that the new Sparks owners would also be a non-NBA or NHL team owner.  And the owners would likely be not unlike Paula Madison, meaning that they would be smaller owners based on wealth which would not significantly alter the demographics of the WNBA Board of Governors.  While this isn't discussed in many outlets, we've mentioned that adding a 7th NBA team owner into a 12 team league can affect collective bargaining.

Third, the league may also be willing to wait longer than just a couple weeks to see this scenario materialize, even if this means that Lacob walks away from an opportunity to buy the Sparks today and relocate them to the Bay Area.  So the WNBA is perhaps willing to go all in for keeping the Sparks in Los Angeles.  But it is also willing to accept the consequences of the franchise folding if current talks fall through, or even soon after, if the new owners aren't capable of running shop long term, like Paula Madison was.

Certainly this saga isn't quite over yet.

(H/T to Shannon Cotterell who had the link first!)

Keep in the loop on this saga and Sparks Watch in our StoryStream!

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Swish Appeal

You must be a member of Swish Appeal to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Swish Appeal. You should read them.

Join Swish Appeal

You must be a member of Swish Appeal to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Swish Appeal. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9347_tracker