Wednesday, July 22, 2009
If Tulsa wants a WNBA team, they've got one month to prove it. According to Tulsa World, Bill Cameron and David Box - the potential major investors - have been told exactly what the WNBA needs to accept Tulsa.
Obviously, investors have to be in place, and there is the opening franchise cost which is quoted at $10 million (which is probably smaller that what is quoted, or which can be paid off in installments). There have to be ticket sales, corporate sponsors and a deal with Tulsa's BOK Center, which hasn't been concluded yet.
The money quotes:
Orender cautioned not to read too much into her appearance in Tulsa.
“It’s not done,” she said of Tulsa’s work in landing a franchise. “I have visited with other cities.”
Orender said four other cities also are seeking teams but didn’t name those cities. She said Tulsa is the furthest along in the process.
“When you look at the business model and the scale of the WNBA, a city lilke Tulsa can be enormously successful,” Orender said. “We’ve had ongoing discussions (with other cities) and there have been times in discussions that we (as a league) have said we weren’t sure we wanted to continue this process. But never with Tulsa. “They have continued to come back to us. They have passed the ultimate test in terms of continuing to display their interest and commitment to women’s basketball. The model they put together, their commitment to Tulsa, their willingness to really contribute if you will is a real community asset. They believe in this city and it is something that I think the citizens of Tulsa will partner with them and together create success.”
Now, this could be complete BS from Donna, but that last paragraph is about as close to saying, "Tulsa will have a team in 2010" without selling tickets and choosing a team name. Futhermore, Clay Bennett in Oklahoma City states that he won't make a fuss about Tulsa having a WNBA team.
I'd like to know the names of those other four cities, myself. However, with regards to Tulsa, all will be revealed come September 2009.