Atlanta Dream Expansion Draft Set for Feb. 6
NEW YORK, Jan. 31, 2008 – The WNBA’s 14th and newest franchise, the Atlanta Dream, will begin assembling its inaugural season roster on Wednesday, Feb.6, when the league conducts the Atlanta Expansion Draft.
Atlanta has the ability to select from a designated pool of available players as determined by each of the other 13 teams. Prior to the Expansion Draft, each of those 13 clubs must designate a maximum of six players who will be “protected” and therefore not available for selection in the Expansion Draft. Atlanta may choose one player from each club and may do so without regard to current contract status provided that the Dream selects no more than one unrestricted free agent. In the event that Atlanta selects an unrestricted free agent, they would have the right to designate that player as a "core" player – gaining exclusive negotiating rights in exchange for an offer of a one-year, fully guaranteed contract at the maximum salary.
The Dream will submit to the league the list of players selected in the Expansion Draft on Feb. 6. Those names will be announced at 3 p.m. that afternoon and Atlanta Head Coach and General Manager Marynell Meadors (above) will be available for interviews.
In addition to the Expansion Draft, the Dream will have the fourth pick in each round (the fourth, 18th and 32nd choices overall) of the 2008 WNBA Draft in April.
The Dream, which will open the regular season May 17 on the road against the Connecticut Sun, will host the defending Eastern Conference champion Detroit Shock in their home opener at Atlanta’s Philips Arena on May 23. For information, and to purchase season tickets for Atlanta’s inaugural season, fans can call (404) 604-2626 or visit www.atlantadream.net. Email inquiries should be sent to email@example.com.
About the WNBA
Now entering its 12th season, the WNBA is the longest-running and most successful women’s professional team sports league in America. The WNBA features 14 teams with the Eastern and Western Conferences comprised of seven teams each. In 2008, the expansion Atlanta Dream will join the Chicago Sky, Connecticut Sun, Detroit Shock, Indiana Fever, New York Liberty and Washington Mystics in the Eastern Conference, while the Houston Comets, Los Angeles Sparks, Minnesota Lynx, Phoenix Mercury, Sacramento Monarchs, San Antonio Silver Stars and Seattle Storm continue to comprise the Western Conference.
The 2008 season will tip off on May 17, when Lisa Leslie and the Los Angeles Sparks take on Diana Taurasi and the defending champion Phoenix Mercury in a nationally televised contest (3:30p.m. on ABC). For the third straight year, ESPN2 will feature “WNBA Tuesdays” as the appointment viewing destination for WNBA fans. ESPN2 will televise “WNBA Tuesdays” for nine weeks during the regular season, beginning with a May 20th telecast featuring a Western Conference match up between the Sacramento Monarchs and Seattle Storm. Combined WNBA coverage on ABC and ESPN2 will include 21 national telecasts in 2008, while NBA TV, the league’s 24-hour television network, will offer 70 regular season contests.
Renowned off the court for its dedication to the community, the WNBA is deeply committed to WNBA CARES programs that improve the quality of life for all people, with a special emphasis on promoting health and fitness, breast health awareness, reading and youth basketball programs. For more information on the WNBA, log onto www.wnba.com.