Warriors purchase Dakota Wizards, move to California possibleBISMARCK — The Golden State Warriors on Tuesday announced their purchase of the Bismarck-based Dakota Wizards franchise in the NBA Development League.
BISMARCK — The Golden State Warriors on Tuesday announced their purchase of the Bismarck-based Dakota Wizards franchise in the NBA Development League.
The Warriors said the Wizards will remain in Bismarck for the 2011-12 season but could be moved to California the following season.
“We’re really excited about the opportunity to acquire an NBA D-League team and view it as a proactive decision,” said Joe Lacob, the Warriors’ co-executive Chairman.
The Warriors said Jim Weyermann, current president of the San Jose Giants, has been named vice president of new franchise development and will oversee business operations of the Wizards, including a potential move to Northern California.
“The Warriors are in the business to win basketball games and the acquisition of the Wizards will enhance their chances of achieving their long-term goals on the court,” Weyermann said.
The Wizards were the D-League affiliate for the Memphis Grizzlies and Washington Wizards the past season. The team had a 19-31 record and finished fourth in the eight-team Eastern Conference.
The Warriors will become the fourth NBA team to own and operate their own NBA D-League affiliate, joining San Antonio, Oklahoma City and the Los Angeles Lakers.
Under NBA and D-League rules, the Warriors will have the ability to build and determine their own roster, but will not own the rights to the Dakota players unless the team signs a specific player to an NBA contract.
Wizards owner Steve McCormack thanks Bismarck area fans for their support of the team, which was formed in 1995 and played six seasons in the International Basketball Association before joining the revived Continental Basketball Association in 2001. The Wizards became a D-League affiliate in 2006.
“The community has embraced the team for many years dating back to the CBA and IBA days,” McCormack said. “The new ownership group that will soon be in place, headed by Mr. Lacob and Mr. Guber, is extremely committed and I can assure you that the organization is in capable hands. Our fans will be the beneficiaries of that commitment during the upcoming 2011-12 season.”