Curry, Thompson and Kerr react to WNBA’s move to the Bay

Golden State Warriors’ core is looking forward to having the WNBA next door

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Steph Curry has a few suggestions for the name of the Bay Area’s new WNBA franchise. He has none that he is willing to share.

“I don’t give out those ideas for free,” Curry explained.

The Warriors practiced in the practice facility below the court on Thursday, where officials officially announced that the franchise would bring a new, temporarily nameless WNBA team to San Francisco and Oakland.

“Something that resembles the characteristics of the Bay Area,” Klay Thompson suggested.

The team name will be revealed later. First and foremost, the Bay Area can revel in excitement. The Warriors’ core understands how much the Bay Area’s interest in basketball has grown since their team began dominating the NBA nearly a decade ago. Curry and Thompson are also aware of the strong women’s basketball culture that existed in Golden State prior to their arrival, led by Tara Van Derveer and Stanford women’s basketball.

“It’s great timing given the level of interest in the sport here in the Bay and the level of play,” said head coach Steve Kerr.

According to owner Joe Lacob, timing was everything in bringing a women’s basketball team to the Bay Area since the American Basketball League and his San Jose Lasers folded. Since its inception 27 years ago, the WNBA has established itself as the premier women’s league, and the quality has only improved.

“The quality of play has dramatically improved over the last decade,” he said.

Kerr added that he learned a lot about the women’s game while working as the general manager of the Phoenix Suns in the late 2000s, where he met three-time WNBA champion Diana Taurasi.

Thompson has been a fan of women’s basketball since he was a child in Portland, where he admired Portland Fire star Jackie Stiles for her accurate shooting.

“Then I Southern California and was lucky enough to watch Lisa Leslie play and win championships,”Thompson said. “Hopefully, now that I’m an adult, I’ll be able to see some WNBA championships in the Bay…It’s a hotbed of talent, and it appears to have been a long time coming.”

What WNBA players most closely resemble Thompson’s game as one of the best shooters in NBA history? Thompson had a few responses, including Walnut Creek native and New York Liberty star Sabrina Ionescu.

“But she does much more than I do, she’s a triple-double threat every night,” she said. “I love watching Caitlin Clarke play because of her ability to pull up from anywhere and score from anywhere.”

Curry has been a champion for women’s sports in the Bay Area and beyond, hosting women’s camps and tournaments during the offseason for his two passions, basketball and golf. Cameron Brink, Curry’s godsister, is a Stanford Cardinal defender in her senior year. Brink would be eligible for the WNBA Draft in 2024, a year before the Golden State WNBA team’s inaugural draft in 2025.

It’s unlikely she’ll return to Stanford for a fifth year to play with her godbrother.

“Having seen her since she was almost a baby until now, it’s wild for her,” Curry went on to say. “What matters now is that she focus on her season and hopefully leads the Stanford women’s team to another championship, as she did her freshman year.” The future looks promising no matter where she ends up, WNBA or otherwise, but it would be cool to have her with this franchise.”

Curry, Thompson, and Kerr are all excited to have a women’s team nearby.

“It’s awesome that we have a team now,” Thompson said. “I’ll definitely be doing a lot of Bay crossings on the boat.”

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