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Reports: Portland ‘likely’ to receive WNBA expansion team

Earlier this year, WNBA commissioner Cathy Engelbert attended an event in Portland intended to show the city's support for an expansion team. (David Dow/NBAE via Getty Images)

The WNBA is “likely” to add an expansion team in Portland, Oregon, in addition to one in the San Francisco Bay Area, according to multiple reports.

While the league is still in conversations over a second expansion team, Portland is the “likely” landing spot, ESPN reported. Discussions involving a Portland team have reached the league’s Board of Governors, as first reported by The Next.

The WNBA announced the Bay Area expansion team Thursday. The team is set to begin play in 2025, bringing the league to 13 teams overall.

“Our goal is to have a 14th team by 2025,” WNBA commissioner Cathy Engelbert said Thursday.

The WNBA had been teasing an impending expansion announcement on its social media accounts since Tuesday amid reports of a deal with the NBA’s Golden State Warriors to bring a franchise to the Bay Area. Before this, the WNBA had not expanded since adding the Atlanta Dream in 2008.

While WNBA commissioner Cathy Engelbert previously had said the league aimed to announce locations for up to two expansion teams by the end of 2022, she walked back that timeline last December. In May, she revealed that the league had narrowed its list of potential cities to 20.

In February, Engelbert attended an an event held at Portland women’s sports bar The Sports Bra to show community support for the addition of a WNBA team in the city.