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WNBA announces 2024 schedule, including a new Commissioner’s Cup format

The 2024 WNBA season begins May 14 and extends through Sept. 19. A new Commissioner’s Cup format highlights the league’s second-straight 40-game season.

2023 WNBA Finals - Las Vegas Aces v New York Liberty
The 2024 WNBA season begins May 14.
Photo by Stephen Gosling/NBAE via Getty Images

WNBA Commissioner Cathy Engelbert delivered a pre-Christmas present on Monday afternoon, announcing the 2024 WNBA schedule. The highlight of the league’s second-straight 40-game season will be a new Commissioner’s Cup format.

The 2024 season begins Tuesday, May 14 and extends through Thursday, Sept. 19, with the WNBA Playoffs to follow. Information about the 2024 television schedule will be released at a later date.

The W will begin the 2024 season with a bang

Opening night features a five-game slate with:

  • 2023 MVP Breanna Stewart and the Finals runners-up New York Liberty heading to the nation’s capital to take on the Washington Mystics at 7 p.m. ET.
  • the Indiana Fever, 2023 Rookie of the Year Aliyah Boston and the 2024 No. 1 pick facing the Connecticut Sun at 8 p.m. ET.
  • the back-to-back WNBA champion Las Vegas Aces and 2023 Finals MVP A’ja Wilson hosting the Phoenix Mercury at 10 p.m. ET.
  • the Minnesota Lynx meeting the Seattle Storm in a matchup of 2023 All-WNBA First Teamers Napheesa Collier and Jewell Loyd at 10 p.m. ET.

On Wednesday, May 15, the league’s other four teams will open their seasons with the Chicago Sky taking on the Dallas Wings (8 p.m. ET) and the Los Angeles Sparks welcoming the Atlanta Dream (10 p.m. ET.)

A new Commissioner’s Cup

The WNBA has modified the in-season Commissioner’s Cup, debuting, in the words of Commissioner Engelbert, “a new, streamlined format” that “adds an increased sense of urgency and excitement.”

The first two weeks of June will feature only Commissioner’s Cup qualifying games, with all teams playing five games against the other teams in their conference. Some teams will have three home games and two road games, while others will have two home games to three road games. All games will still count towards teams’ regular-season records.

The teams from the Eastern and Western Conferences with the best records in Cup qualifying games will advance to the Commissioner’s Cup Championship, which will be held Tuesday, June 25 in the home arena of the team with the best overall record in Cup play. The teams that qualify for the championship will compete for a portion of the $500,000 prize pool, in addition to the opportunity to support a non-profit organization.

20th All-Star Game and 25-day Olympic break

The 20th edition of the WNBA All-Star Game will be held Saturday, July 20 at Footprint Center in Phoenix, AZ.

The following day, the league’s 25-day Olympic break (July 21 to Aug. 14) will begin. The regular season will resume Thursday, Aug. 15 with three games: Phoenix Mercury at Chicago Sky (8 p.m. ET), Washington Mystics at Minnesota Lynx (8 p.m. ET) and New York Liberty at Los Angeles Sparks (10 p.m. ET).

The furious finish

All 12 teams will be action on the season’s final day, Thursday, Sept. 19. The matchups are:

  • Chicago Sky at Connecticut Sun (7 p.m. ET)
  • Atlanta Dream at New York Liberty (7 p.m. ET)
  • Indiana Fever at Washington Mystics (7 p.m. ET)
  • Los Angeles Sparks at Minnesota Lynx (7 p.m. ET)
  • Dallas Wings at Las Vegas Aces (9 p.m. ET)
  • Seattle Storm at Phoenix Mercury (9 p.m. ET)