If you live in Atlanta and love women’s basketball, it’s now official: You have your own WNBA team on the way.
Ron Terwilliger, CEO of Trammell Crow Residential, one of the nation’s largest developers of apartments and condominiums, is the principal owner of the new franchise in that city. WNBA president Donna Orender was with Terwilliger recently, when the official announcement was made.
The move signals expansion for the WNBA. Like the Chicago Sky, which began play this year, the Atlanta club is a brand new team — unlike the Connecticut Sun, for example, which was originally the now-defunct Miami Sol.
Atlanta will begin play in the 2008 season, and Terwilliger deserves a pat on the back for the quick turnaround time on his idea to bring women’s pro hoops down South. Currently, there are only two teams in the South, both in Texas: the San Antonio Silver Stars and Houston Comets.
The league, at which naysayers scoffed amid claims it would never last, appears to be doing quite well, thank you. Last year, in its 11th season, it enjoyed increased regular-season attendance, and set a new postseason attendance record. In addition, viewership of the league finals on ESPN2 was up 12 percent from the previous year.
A name for the new Atlanta team is still being determined, as its geographical moniker (Atlanta or Georgia?).
Even if the name is as lame as the Sky (can anyone explain that?), there are sure to be many grateful Georgia hoops fans turning out to support their team. Terwilliger is banking on it.
Nor can I. You go, boy!