The Atlanta Dream, the WNBA crew co-owned by outgoing Georgia Senator Kelly Loeffler, is on the verge of being bought, the league confirmed to CBS Information on Tuesday. The Atlanta Journal-Structure first reported on the potential sale.
“Because it pertains to the Atlanta Dream, we perceive a sale of the franchise is near being finalized,” a WNBA spokesperson advised CBS Information. “As soon as the sale negotiation is concluded, extra data might be offered.”
Information of a potential deal comes on the identical day Loeffler, a Republican, is finishing out her term as senator.
The WNBA and the Dream made headlines with their league-wide assist of Black Lives Matter throughout the summer season with BLM warm-up outfits and jerseys. However Loeffler objected to the apply in June and requested WNBA Commissioner Cathy Engelbert to place an finish to it.
In a press release deriding the protest in August, Loeffler referred to as the gamers’ shirts an indication of cancel tradition. “That is simply extra proof that the uncontrolled cancel tradition needs to close out anybody who disagrees with them,” she stated. “It is clear that the league is extra involved with enjoying politics than basketball, and I stand by what I wrote in June.”
In response, the Atlanta Dream and different members of the WNBA endorsed one in all her Senate opponents, Democrat Raphael Warnock, going as far as to put on “Vote Warnock” shirts at their video games. Solely two days after gamers wore the shirts, the marketing campaign had raised greater than $185,000 on-line, added 3,500 grassroots donors and grew Warnock’s Twitter account by practically 3,500 followers, a marketing campaign official advised CBS Information.
Loeffler was defeated byin a January 5 runoff election that noticed each incumbent Republican senators from Georgia lose out to Democratic challengers, shifting the steadiness of energy within the Senate.
Whereas the gamers’ protest additionally referred to as for Loeffler’s removing, neither she nor co-owner Mary Brock had stated the Dream was on the market publicly earlier than the WNBA’s assertion. The potential purchaser will not be identified right now, however Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James threw his hat within the ring on January 6, suggesting on Twitter that he needs to “put collectively an possession group” to buy the crew.
CBS Information reached out to the Dream for remark however didn’t instantly hear again.
Zoe Christen Jones contributed reporting.