Women's basketball's WNBA has opened an investigation into a new sponsorship deal between the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority, the government agency and official destination marketing organization for Southern Nevada, and players from the reigning champions, the Las Vegas Aces. 

Under the agreement, announced last Friday (May 17), the tourism body will provide a $100,000 annual sponsorship to each player for the next two seasons.

However, the agreement has raised flags with the WNBA, although the sponsorship does not violate the WNBA's salary cap because the authority did not negotiate it with the club.

It is believed other teams are still likely to raise questions about the fairness of the sponsorship and whether it violates the spirit of the cap rules since some Aces players currently earn less than $100,000 per year.

Top earners at the franchise will also see their income increase by around 50%, effectively shifting their earnings above salary caps.

Aces coach Becky Hammon has said that the tourism bureau reached out to the individual players and agents, setting up sponsorship deals individually, with the Aces organization not involved.

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Last year, the WNBA took away the Aces' 2025 first-round draft pick and suspended Hammon for two matches following an investigation that found the team broke league rules relating to illegal player benefits and workplace policies.

Meanwhile, the New York Liberty generated a record for single-game ticket revenue in the WNBA for the visit of young star Caitlin Clark and the Indiana Fever on Saturday (May 18).

According to the Associated Press, the Liberty made more than $2 million in ticket revenue for the game at the Barclays Center, which set a new league record.

The match was sold out, with 17,735 fans in attendance.

Clark's recent debut for the Fever against the Connecticut Sun became the most-watched game in the WNBA since 2001 as her popularity continues to soar.

The opening night match averaged 2.13 million viewers across ESPN2 (2.12 million) and ESPN Deportes (13K).