The sale of the WNBA’s Atlanta Dream – co-owned by outgoing US Sen. Kelly Loeffler – is close to being finalized, a league spokesperson told CNN on Tuesday.
The news of the sale was first reported by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
Loeffler, who lost to Rev. Raphael Warnock in the historic Georgia senatorial runoff earlier this month, is a Republican who previously caused controversy in the WNBA by saying she doesn’t support the Black Lives Matter movement. She also called for the depoliticization of professional sports.
Warnock is scheduled to be sworn in as a US senator on Wednesday.
“As it relates to the Atlanta Dream, we understand a sale of the franchise is close to being finalized,” a WNBA spokesperson told CNN in an email. “Once the sale negotiation is concluded, additional information will be provided.”
The Atlanta Dream did not have a comment, according to a team spokesperson. CNN has also reached out to Loeffler’s representatives, but has not heard back.
Last summer Dream players released a unified signed statement – over Loeffler’s objection – saying they supported the Black Lives Matter movement.
Despite pressure to sell her share in the team, Loeffler has refused to do so in the past, which emboldened WNBA players to campaign against her. Several Atlanta Dream players were photographed wearing “Vote Warnock” shirts in the days leading up to the election earlier this month.
Warnock’s victory meant he became the first Black US senator from Georgia. He was also is the first Georgia Democrat elected to the US Senate in more than 20 years.
NBA superstar LeBron James tweeted on January 6 that he was thinking of putting together an ownership group to purchase the Dream.