Portland Fire

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Portland Fire
Portland Fire logo.gif
Conference Western
Leagues WNBA
HistoryPortland Fire
Arena Rose Garden
Location Portland, Oregon
Team colorsRed, black, gold, white

The Portland Fire were a professional basketball team in the Women's National Basketball Association (WNBA) based in Portland, Oregon that joined the league in 2000 as the counterpart to the NBA’s Portland Trail Blazers. They played their games at the Rose Garden. The team folded after the 2002 season, its third in the league. They were the only WNBA team that ceased operations without having made the playoffs.



In its short, three-year history, the Portland Fire franchise held some of the more dubious distinctions among WNBA franchises. Founded in 2000, Portland Trail Blazers owner Paul Allen served as the team's chairman. Led by Vanessa Nygaard and Sylvia Crawley, the team managed a 10–22 win–loss record in their inaugural season. In the 2001 season, the team faced another losing season but found hope in the play of rookie guard Jackie Stiles, who would win the WNBA Rookie of the Year Award. However, in 2002 Stiles suffered a severe injury and was out for most of the season. Without their star player, the Fire finished with an even record.

The 2002 season proved to be the Portland Fire's swan song season, but most improved. After this season, the WNBA sold ownership of their franchises to owners of their counterpart NBA teams or to third parties. Portland Fire chairman Paul Allen's continued financial problems with what was seen league-wide as an underachieving Trail Blazers team put him out of the running to buy the Fire franchise and led to the Portland Fire folding in 2002. A group led by Clyde Drexler and Terry Emmert attempted to buy the franchise, but a deal was not made. [1] [2] With this, the Fire became the only WNBA franchise not to make the playoffs, and along with the Miami Sol, the WNBA franchise with the shortest lifespan.

Season-by-season records

SeasonTeamConferenceRegular Season Playoff Results
Portland Fire
2000 2000 West 7th1022.313Did not qualify
2001 2001 West 7th1121.344
2002 2002 West 5th1616.500
Regular season3759.3850 Conference Championships
Playoffs00.0000 WNBA Championships

Roster and coach


Head coach

Linda Hargrove was the head coach and general manager of the Portland Fire from 2000 to 2002. [8] She later served as general manager of the Washington Mystics from 2005 until 2008. [9]

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