As interest in women’s basketball grows, WNBA gets a new TV partner

"WNBA Friday Night Spotlight on ION" will feature games on Friday nights over 15 weeks of the regular season from May 26 to Sept. 8.
WNBA Commissioner Cathy Engelbert and Adam Symson, President and CEO of The E.W. Scripps Company.
Posted at 3:05 PM, Apr 20, 2023

Interest in women’s basketball appears to be growing— from the college ranks to the WNBA.

ESPN reported that the recent NCAA women’s basketball championship generated nearly 10 million viewers, making it the most-watched women’s college basketball game on record.

The WNBA is also seeing a surge in viewership. The league said viewership was up 16% last season across its national television partners.

The E.W. Scripps Company, parent company of Scripps News, announced Thursday that it signed a multi-year partnership with the WNBA to televise regular season games on Friday nights on ION, which is available over-the-air and through major connected TV services. 

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“Access to watch WNBA games is in high demand, and Scripps’ dedicated Friday night lineup of WNBA games on ION will become much desired appointment viewing for WNBA fans,” WNBA Commissioner Cathy Engelbert said in a press release.

Brian Lawlor, head of the Scripps Sports division, said the WNBA will be producing all the games.

 He noted that there is a regional approach to distributing the games on ION. Lawlor said when a team plays on Friday night, it will be available in their home city.

The 2023 WNBA season tips off on May 19. “WNBA Friday Night Spotlight on ION” begins on May 26.