US women’s basketball’s elite WNBA competition has announced a new deal with sports data and technology firm Genius Sports.

Through the deal, Genius’ Second Spectrum 3D optical tracking solution will become the official optical tracking provider for the WNBA, making it the first US-based women’s professional sports league to agree to such a partnership.

The partnership will be inaugurated at the March 14 opening fixture of the 2024 WNBA season, with every WNBA game to be furnished with cameras used to collect player and ball tracing data that can be used for both basketball and commercial applications.

Cathy Engelbert, the WNBA’s commissioner, stated of the new partnership: “Deploying state-of-the-art optical tracking technology through Genius Sports will deliver rich data to our teams that they can leverage to enhance player performance while informing in-game strategy and enable a new wave of insights and media elements for fans.”

The data captured through the partnership will also be integrated into Genius Sports’ wider basketball insight and analytics engine.

Genius Sports’ chief commercial officer Jack Davison added: “For the first time ever, every WNBA team will have access to our groundbreaking suite of analytics, video production tools, and our advanced tracking system that underpins the basketball ecosystem.”

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One of the WNBA teams that will be able to capitalize on the new Genius deal is the 2023 champion Las Vegas Aces, which this week announced a new partnership with financial services company Ally Financial.

Ally will serve as the jersey patch partner of the Aces in a multi-year deal, with the branded patch to appear on all Aces jerseys across the length of the partnership.

Through partnership Ally, serving as the team’s first official retail banking partner, will collaborate with the Aces franchise on activations around fixtures, as well as community outreach initiatives.

Andrea Brimmer, chief marketing and PR officer at Ally, stated: “We've been interested in entering the WNBA for years because it's one of the most popular women's sports leagues in the country, and it's imperative to Ally reaching our 50/50 [spending across men’s and women’s sport] goal.”

"We aren't going to sponsor just any team. The Aces are the best team in the league, drawing national attention and major respect from basketball fans worldwide, and together we have many shared values. They're the perfect addition to our growing sports portfolio."

The 2024 12-team WNBA season will run from mid-May to mid-September.