View Full Version : WTA Championships to move to Hollywood

Mar 11th, 2002, 09:38 PM
Well, maybe not Hollywood, but Los Angeles is just as close.
This is good news to L.A. Williams fans and those fans who come to see them play when this event is finally moved from Munich.
Williams victory parties will be held at the Hollywood House of Blues. :p

INDIAN WELLS -- The WTA Tour is likely to move its troubled season-ending championships from Munich, Germany, to Staples Center this year, pending approval of its board of directors, sources said Sunday.

That could come shortly because a scheduled meeting of the board is at the next major tournament, in Key Biscayne, Fla., which starts March 18. Approval is anticipated but one source said the deal is not certain, pointing out: "Anything can happen in two weeks when it comes to tennis."

At the Pacific Life Open, WTA officials declined comment, and Tim Leiweke, president of Staples Center and the Anschutz Entertainment Group, was traveling and could not be reached for comment. Negotiations have been in the works since late last year. Kevin Wulff, the WTA's new chief executive officer, made two trips to Los Angeles near the end of 2001 to meet with AEG officials. Wulff and Leiweke have a business relationship dating back to when Leiweke worked for the Minnesota Timberwolves and Wulff was an executive with Miller Brewing Company.

"L.A. is a great tennis market and we'd love to get AEG involved," said Wulff at the Australian Open in January.

In a recent interview, Leiweke would not speak about the negotiations between AEG and the WTA regarding the championships.

"We're talking to a lot of people about a lot of different things in tennis," Leiweke said. "And some of those conversations are related to L.A., some are related to other things."

It's been no secret the tour was looking for another spot for its premier event. For years, it was based in New York at Madison Square Garden and attendance plummeted in 2001 after the move to the Olympiahalle in Munich.

Attendance for the six-day event was 36,500, compared to 94,133 the final year at the Garden, according to WTA figures.

Venus Williams did not play in the event because of an injury, and Monica Seles has refused to play in Germany since she was stabbed in Hamburg in 1993, and she was greatly upset by the decision to move the tournament from New York to Munich.

The move could trigger a series of other events.

Groundbreaking was last month in Carson for AEG's $120-million sports complex, which will feature a 13,000-seat tennis stadium, and there have been long-running discussions between AEG, the WTA and management company IMG about moving the Manhattan Beach women's tournament to Carson.

Meanwhile, the WTA finds itself in a state of flux. There has been speculation the organization could move its corporate headquarters from St. Petersburg, Fla., to Los Angeles. Atlanta is said to be another possibility.

I am ready to buy my tickets as soon as it is announced. :cool:

Mar 12th, 2002, 12:18 AM
Let's hope the deal goes through!
Just for you, TeeRexx, just for you.:)

Williams Rulez
Mar 12th, 2002, 02:48 AM
If it goes true... you can bring us reports on how our girls are playing :D

Move to LA!! :bounce: :bounce: