The first WNBA fantasy basketball designed by ESPN is on the way. ESPN Fantasy Women’s Basketball, a full-scale, season-long fantasy game dedicated to a major women’s sport will be introduced by ESPN Fantasy next month.
The game will be open for signups in early April ahead of the start of the 2022 WNBA season, which tips off Friday, May 6. So get the crew together now, and start organizing your league.
The launch of ESPN Fantasy Women’s Basketball follows huge viewership growth of the WNBA across multiple categories on ESPN networks in 2021, during which the league celebrated its historic 25th season and crowned the GOAT.
Fantasy sports is a multi-billion dollar business reports Yahoo!, with 20 million players on ESPN alone. It’s especially popular among younger fans, who tend to follow players more than teams.
Daily fantasy sports platforms such as DraftKings and FanDuel have offered one-off WNBA game play since 2017. And Sports.ws, an indie fantasy basketball site has offered season-long WNBA games since 2019. All have seen tons of fans flock to their platforms.
After launching WNBA games midway through the 2017 season, DraftKings saw an 86% uptick in free and paid entries during the 2018 season. FanDuel launched fantasy WNBA in early 2017, drawing one million entries in its first six weeks. A company official confirmed that total entries were up in 2018 over 2017, despite the increased competition from DraftKings, reported Sports Illustrated.
Draft nights are huge social events for friends and colleagues. Millions use fantasy leagues as a way to stay in touch with friends across the country. With the launch of the season-long immersive experience of ESPN‘s new game, WNBA fans can celebrate with draft parties and stay locked in during the season, too. So get your orange and white cupcakes, trophies, themed T-shirts, and charcuterie boards ready.
Today ESPN Fantasy is the No. 1 provider in fantasy sports with a portfolio of award-winning games and content serving more than 20 million fantasy players. ESPN Fantasy continues to innovate to reach new and younger audiences through all of its products: its latest innovation is the Fantasy Women’s Basketball game.
ESPN Fantasy Women’s Basketball will offer fans a full-scale fantasy game with customizable settings for:
Like other industry-leading ESPN Fantasy games, ESPN Fantasy Women’s Basketball will be supported with analytical tools and editorial insights to help fans with their drafts, manage rosters, make trades, and more. ESPN Fantasy Women’s Basketball will be available to play in the ESPN Fantasy App for iOS and Android.
A bunch of additional WNBA fantasy tools to help create rosters will likely pop up to support the ESPN game, but here are a few that can give you a jump start:
Similarly to WNBA betting, WNBA fantasy basketball should increase interest in live games and the league. FanDuel research previously found that entrants consumed 40% more sports content after playing on the site.