Most Recently Amazon and the Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA) announced that Lisa Leslie and Lisa Byington will call the inaugural WNBA Commissioner’s Cup Championship Game between the Connecticut Sun and the Seattle Storm, which will air exclusively on Prime Video on Thursday, August 12, at 9 p.m. ET. The game will stream live from the Footprint Center in Phoenix, Arizona, and is available to Prime members globally at no additional cost.
The WNBA Commissioner’s Cup has added a new level of importance to regular season games—and a significant prize pool for teams—through the selection of 60, intra-conference “Cup games” that were played in the first half of the WNBA season. The Sun and Storm came out on top this year in the Eastern and Western Conferences, respectively. Players on the winning team will each earn $30,000, while those on the runner-up team will each receive $10,000. The MVP of the WNBA Commissioner’s Cup title game will take home an extra $5,000. The in-season “competition within a competition” is part of the league’s focus on innovation and fan engagement during the WNBA’s historic 25th season. The new competition was first announced in January 2020, and the blueprint—including new partnerships—were announced in May 2021.
“The Commissioner’s Cup Championship Game is the culmination of the WNBA’s new wildly successful mid-season tournament, and it marks a pivotal moment of the WNBA season—the end of the Olympic break and the starting point for the second half of the 2021 season,” said Marie Donoghue, vice president of Global Sports Video at Amazon. “We’ve seen an overwhelmingly positive response to the WNBA on Prime Video this season, and we look forward to streaming the championship game globally on August 12.”
Lisa Leslie, who will serve as lead analyst for the game, was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 2015 after a storied career that included four Olympic gold medals, two WNBA championships, three WNBA MVP honors, and selection to eight WNBA All-Star Games. Leslie was the first player to dunk in a WNBA game and still today ranks second in total blocks (822), third in blocks per game (2.26), fourth in total rebounds (3,307), fourth in rebounds per game (9.1), and ninth in total points (6,263) in WNBA history.
Lisa Byington will serve as the play-by-play lead for the Commissioner’s Cup title game. She covers the WNBA regularly as the play-by-play voice of the Chicago Sky and is also calling Tokyo Olympics soccer for NBC. In March, Byington became the first female play-by-play announcer to work the NCAA Division 1 Men’s Basketball Tournament for CBS and Turner Sports. She was part of the first all-female broadcast team to call an MLS match in 2018. In 2017, Byington was the first female to be the play-by-play announcer for a college football game that was televised by the Big Ten Network.
Following the WNBA Commissioner’s Cup Championship Game on August 12, there are seven more games airing on Prime Video during the second half of the WNBA season:
- Tuesday, August 17 – Minnesota Lynx @ Connecticut Sun, 7 p.m. ET
- Friday, August 20 – Seattle Storm @ New York Liberty, 7 p.m. ET
- Thursday, August 26 – Dallas Wings @ Washington Mystics, 7 p.m. ET
- Tuesday, August 31 – New York Liberty @ Minnesota Lynx, 8 p.m. ET
- Thursday, September 2 – New York Liberty @ Seattle Storm, 10 p.m. ET
- Tuesday, September 7 – Connecticut Sun @ Dallas Wings, 8 p.m. ET
- Thursday, September 16 – Los Angeles Sparks @ Atlanta Dream, 7 p.m. ET
The WNBA Commissioner’s Cup on Prime Video will be available across hundreds of compatible devices worldwide as part of a Prime membership (excluding China, Japan, the United Kingdom, Italy, Spain, Finland, and Germany). Remaining WNBA games on Prime Video are also available in the participating teams’ markets through the teams’ local distribution partners.
About Prime Video Sports
Prime Video supports a growing line-up of live sports globally, including Thursday Night Football, the New York Yankees, and Seattle Sounders FC in the United States; Premier League in the United Kingdom; U.S. Open Tennis, ATP, and WTA in the United Kingdom and Ireland; UEFA Champions League football in Germany and Italy; Roland Garros and Ligue 1 in France; Australian Swimming globally; and New Zealand Cricket in India. While availability varies by marketplace, fans can also subscribe to streaming services such as Eurosport, LaLigaTV, MLB.TV, NBA League Pass, NBA TV, and PGA TOUR LIVE through Prime Video Channels. This is in addition to a selection of Amazon Original All or Nothing sports docuseries including All or Nothing: Tottenham Hotspur and All or Nothing seasons with the NFL’s Arizona Cardinals, Los Angeles Rams, Dallas Cowboys, Carolina Panthers, and Philadelphia Eagles, as well as the NCAA’s Michigan Wolverines. All or Nothing: Toronto Maple Leafs and All or Nothing: Juventus are also coming to Prime Video later this year. For more information, visit amazon.com/primevideo and follow @SportsOnPrime on Twitter and Instagram.
Prime Video is just one of many shopping and entertainment benefits included with a Prime membership, along with fast, free shipping on millions of Prime-eligible items at Amazon.com, unlimited photo storage, exclusive deals and discounts, and access to ad-free music and Kindle eBooks. To sign up or start a 30-day free trial of Prime, visit amazon.com/prime.
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About the WNBA
Currently in its 25th season in 2021, the WNBA is a bold, progressive basketball league that stands for the power of women. Featuring 12 teams, the W is a unique sports property that combines competition and entertainment with a commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion and social responsibility. Through its world-class athletes, the in-game fan experience, TV and digital broadcasts, digital and social content and community outreach programs, the league celebrates and elevates the game of basketball and the culture around it.
In 2020, the WNBA and the Women’s National Basketball Players Association (WNBPA) signed a groundbreaking eight-year CBA that charts a new course for women’s basketball—and women’s sports overall—with a focus on increased player compensation, improvements to the player experience, expanded career development opportunities, and resources specifically tailored to the female professional athlete. Key elements of the agreement are supported through the league’s new platform, WNBA Changemakers, with AT&T, the WNBA’s Marquee Partner and inaugural Changemaker, as well as fellow inaugural Changemakers Deloitte and Nike, and the recent addition of Google. During the 2020 season, the WNBA and WNBPA launched the WNBA Justice Movement forming the Social Justice Council with the mission of being a driving force of necessary change and continuing conversations about race and voting rights, among other important societal issues.