In celebration of the WNBA's 25th season and 25 years of broadcasting WNBA games, ESPN networks—the league's longest-running broadcast partner—will carry 25 telecasts throughout the regular season, including three on ESPN, 12 on ESPN2, and an all-time high nine on ABC. The complete schedule will be announced at a later date.
To watch the WNBA live outside of your country of residence, you will need to purchase an overseas subscription. However, it is possible to view WNBA games online through the ESPN website or via the ESPN app. Users can log in with their existing ESPN account information to access out-of-market games online via WatchESPN. In addition, the WNBA offers a webcast of each game that can be accessed online via the league's website.
What is the WNBA? The WNBA is one of the most successful professional women's sports leagues in the United States. Founded in 1996 by David Stern, the NBA commissioner at the time, the WNBA is owned by Disney Sports & Media, which also owns ESPN. The WNBA uses the same rules as the NBA and plays a 32-game regular season followed by a post-season championship series. The Chicago Sky are the current champions after defeating the Minnesota Lynx 4-3 in overtime of the Finals last month.
Additionally, during the WNBA Playoffs presented by Google and the WNBA Finals 2021 sponsored by YouTube TV, ABC/ESPN/ESPN2 will broadcast up to 19 postseason games. During the regular season and postseason, all ESPN telecasts will be available live on the ESPN app. Regional sports networks may air these games as well.
The NBA announced that the 2021 WNBA Finals will be played at Madison Square Garden in New York City. This is the first time the Finals have been held outside of California since 1997 when they were held in Seattle. The last time the Finals were held in New York was in 2007 when Sacramento defeated Houston 4-1 to win its first title.
The East Bay has never hosted a WNBA Championship. But with players like Elena Delle Donne and A'ja Wilson leading the charge, we're sure it won't be our last.
More than 100 national telecasts will be distributed over two broadcast networks (ABC and CBS), four cable networks (ESPN, ESPN2, CBS Sports Network, and NBA TV), and will be available for viewing on Facebook, Twitter, Amazon Prime, and ESPN3. WNBA League Pass will also let fans to watch 110 games live. These are very popular events among women and girls, so expect large crowds when the Stars play.
The league has more than 20 million followers on social media, which is more than the NFL and NBA combined. They have also had several millions of people watch them on TV in 2019. And even though it's only March, they already have more than 1 million tickets sold this season. All this shows that there is huge interest in the WNBA from both audiences and investors.
There are currently eight teams in the WNBA. They play between 10-game schedules during the regular season and then have five weeks of games per month during the playoffs. Each team plays all of their other teams twice during the regular season (once at home, once away).
The Los Angeles Sparks are the most successful team with a WNBA title. They won their first title in 2002 and have been back to the finals every year since then. In addition to having the most success, the Sparks also have the highest average attendance (5,000 per game) of any WNBA team. The Chicago Sky are the only other team to have ever won a WNBA title.
The women's basketball league receives an average of 357,000 viewers on ABC, ESPN, and ESPN2. According to ESPN, viewership of the Women's National Basketball Association (WNBA) has increased dramatically in the first few weeks of the 2021 regular season. The number of people watching games has increased by more than 1 million since 2018.
In 2018, the WNBA had an average audience of 716,000 viewers per game. This represents a increase of nearly 20% compared to 2017 when 593,000 viewers watched games on ABC, ESPN, and ESPN2.
The WNBA has attracted more fans across television networks this year compared to last year. This is because more people are watching basketball as the NBA prepares for its annual March Madness tournament.
There were only 12 teams in the WNBA when it started in 1997. Now there are 10 teams that play about 30 games each. Last year, the Seattle Storm played in the NBA's Western Conference but they returned this season after leaving for Washington DC. The Chicago Sky also left for Nevada this past summer.
The San Antonio Stars were one of the original 12 teams and they still exist today. But now they play in the Southwest Division with the Dallas Wings, New York Liberty, and Tulsa Thunderbirds. In 1998, the Charlotte Sting joined the WNBA from the ABL.