June 28, 2011
Warriors Purchase Dakota Wizards of NBA Development League
Jim Weyermann Named VP of New Franchise Development; Will Oversee Wizards Operational Strategy
The Golden State Warriors, led by Co-Executive Chairmen Joe Lacob and Peter Guber, have purchased the Dakota Wizards franchise in the NBA Development League from Bismarck Professional Basketball LLC, it was announced today at a press conference in Bismarck, North Dakota. The Warriors will become the fourth NBA team to currently own and operate their own NBA D-League affiliate, joining San Antonio, Oklahoma City and the Los Angeles Lakers. Per team policy, terms of the agreement were not announced.
The Wizards will remain in Bismarck during the 2011-12 D-League season – the franchise’s 17th in North Dakota – and the club will explore options of a potential move to Northern California the following season. Jim Weyermann, one of the most successful and respected business figures in minor league sports and current President of the San Jose Giants, has been named the Vice President of New Franchise Development for the Warriors and will oversee all operational aspects of the D-League team from a business standpoint, including a potential relocation to Northern California.
The purchase of the Wizards will result in the ceasing of the Warriors’ D-League affiliation with the Reno Bighorns, which served as the team’s affiliate each of the last two years. Dakota will mark the Warriors’ third D-League affiliation (also Bakersfield Jam from 2006-07 to 2008-09) since the inception of the league prior to the 2006-07 season. The Wizards concluded the 2010-11 season with a 19-31 record and in fourth place in the eight-team Eastern Conference.
“We’re really excited about the opportunity to acquire an NBA D-League team and view it as a proactive decision,” said Lacob. “As we have previously mentioned, one of our goals is to provide our organization with any elements that we think could provide us an advantage. The fact that we will now operate our own D-League team – complete with our coaches and organizational philosophy – will put us in a better position to evaluate and develop potential NBA players, including any of our first or second year players who may spend a stint in the D-League. We think this is a critical step and another plus for our organization. And, we could not have found a more qualified candidate than Jim Weyermann to oversee the team from an operations standpoint.”
Additionally, we’d like to thank Steve McCormick and the ownership group of the Dakota Wizards for their professionalism during this process. We are looking forward to working with the staff in Bismarck this season and feel this was the ideal situation due to their strong and passionate community.”
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. No other NBA team will share this affiliation with Golden State. Last season, the Wizards were the D-League affiliate for the Memphis Grizzlies and Washington Wizards.
“I’m really encouraged by this acquisition of a D-League franchise and applaud Joe and Peter for their commitment in this area,” said Warriors’ Executive Vice President of Basketball Operations Larry Riley. “We have always emphasized the D-League as an organization and, quite honestly, have had very good results and success with the players that we have either signed or developed in the D-League. I think this simply enhances our chances for that trend to continue. The fact that we have an opportunity to align ourselves with an established organization in Bismarck will aid in the overall process.”
“I’m excited about this new opportunity and challenge,” said Weyermann. “I have a great appreciation and understanding for how minor league organizations can serve as a tremendous resource for their parent clubs. 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.”
“First, I’d like to thank the tremendous fans of Bismarck for their continued support of the Wizards,” said Wizards’ owner Steve McCormick. “The community has embraced the team for many years dating back to the CBA and IBA days. 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.”
JIM WEYERMANN – VP OF NEW FRANCHISE DEVELOPMENT
Jim Weyermann was named Vice President of New Franchise Development for the Golden State Warriors on June 28, 2011. In this role, Weyermann will oversee all operational aspects for the organization’s newly purchased NBA D-League team, the Dakota Wizards, from a business standpoint, including a potential relocation to Northern California.
Weyermann joins the Warriors from the San Jose Giants, where he is currently the President and Chief Executive Officer of the Class A Minor League affiliate of the San Francisco Giants, a position he has held since 2005. During his six seasons with the San Jose Giants, the club has established franchise attendance records four times, including in 2009 when the team shattered all franchise attendance and revenue records en route to winning Minor League baseball’s highest honor, “The President’s Trophy,” which is presented annually to the top Minor League franchise in the nation.
With nearly 25 years in the sports and entertainment industry, Weyermann’s experience includes 10 years (1983-93) as Deputy Director of Seattle Center, producing rock shows, family touring shows and working with the NBA’s Seattle Sonics and the Western Hockey League Seattle Thunderbirds. In 1995, he became the General Manager of the Seattle Reign, a professional women’s basketball team in the American Basketball League, a role he served for all of the club’s three seasons. In June of 2000, Jim was responsible for the marketing launch of Experience Music Project, the technically advanced interactive music museum conceived and funded by Microsoft Co-Founder Paul Allen in Seattle.
Upon completion of the Experience Music Project launch, Weyermann relocated to the Bay Area to become the Director of Marketing and Development for the Positive Coaching Alliance at Stanford University. During his tenure at the PCA, Jim worked closely with PCA Founder Jim Thompson and National Spokesperson Phil Jackson to raise money and national awareness for the organization’s innovative youth coach training programs which are available to youth sports organizations.
During his career, Weyermann has developed unique corporate partnerships with some of the nation's top companies including Nike, Microsoft, Safeway, Walt Disney Company and Starbucks, to support various marketing and community programs.
Weyermann resides in Santa Clara.