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WNBA Draft moves to Brooklyn and will have space for fans

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  • ASSOCIATED PRESS
                                Commissioner Cathy Engelbert speaks at the 2023 WNBA basketball draft on April 10 in New York.

    ASSOCIATED PRESS

    Commissioner Cathy Engelbert speaks at the 2023 WNBA basketball draft on April 10 in New York.

NEW YORK >> The WNBA Draft will have a new home this year and for the first time in eight seasons have the space for 1,000 fans to attend.

The league will hold the annual event at the Brooklyn Academy of Music on April 15. Recent drafts, which were held in Manhattan, were in smaller, more intimate venues that didn’t have room for fans.

“We are focused on creating elevated events that WNBA fans won’t want to miss, at a time when the energy for the WNBA has never been higher,” WNBA Commissioner Cathy Engelbert said. “Last season resulted in our most-watched-regular season in over two decades, our highest total attendance in 13 years and set record figures across WNBA digital and social platforms.”

There’s a lot of excitement around this year’s draft with Iowa star Caitlin Clark potentially eligible if she decides to forego her fifth year of college eligibility. The Indiana Fever have the top pick in the draft for the second consecutive year. Last season the team drafted Aliyah Boston with the No. 1 pick.

Clark, who earlier this month became the NCAA’s all-time women’s scoring leader, hasn’t announced her plans yet.

UConn star Paige Bueckers, who was projected to be drafted in the lottery, has said she will return for at least one more season at the school. Stanford’s Cameron Brink and LSU’s Angel Reese haven’t announced whether they will turn pro or come back to college for another year.

The league will have the draftees visit the Empire State Building earlier in the day for a lighting ceremony and they will also have a chance to showcase their personalities and unique fashion styles on an “Orange Carpet” before the draft.

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