Taking Flight

Kehlani fans can’t get over their new WNBA gig

Kehlani‘s latest project has fans ready to swap their headphones for basketball jerseys.

Kehlani’s 2024 is in full effect. They announced a joint album of lullabies with Jhené Aiko ad released their new single “After Hours,” which already has a viral TikTok dance, and now the musical chameleon is shifting into sports.

On Tuesday, the Golden State WNBA expansion team revealed their new name and identity: the Golden State Valkyries. An affiliate of the NBA’s San Francisco-based Golden State Warriors and based on the fearless, warrior women of Norse mythology, the team is a “modern interpretation of Valkyries: strong, bold, and fierce.” And to reveal their new identity, the WNBA team released a promo video narrated by Bay Area native Kehlani.

In a post on X captioned “We are the Golden State Valkyries,” the video shows swooping shots of the Bay Area, as if you’re watching through the eyes of someone flying the through the sky. People down on the ground spot whatever is zooming through the air, only to reveal a cadre of valkyries in San Francisco’s Chase Center, where the team hold games. Finally, the team’s logo and name is revealed, followed by the phrase “Join our ascent” and a link to the team’s website valkyries.com.

“Born in the Bay, gilded in gold,” Kehlani narrates. “This is where legends take flight, but our story has yet to be written.”

Check out the promo video below.

The new WNBA team’s logo pays tribute to its Bay Area roots, featuring the Bay Bridge that doubles as a sword and wings, is shaped like a “V,” representing “the unity of a group of Valkyries in flight, and standing for victory.” The five triangles on each side of the bridge tower signify five players facing against each and the 13 lines within the logo highlight the team as the 13th addition to the WNBA. Finally, the logo is drenched in “Valkyrie Violet,” signifying “power, ambition, nobility, and women’s empowerment, much like purple has been used symbolically in modern history.”

While the Golden State Valkyries will host games in San Francisco, they’ll practice in Oakland at the Golden State Warriors former practice facility. and will begin competing in the 2025 WNBA season. As the league’s 13th active team and first expansion team since 2008’s Altanta Dream, the Golden State Valkyries’ inclusion marks a historic moment in the WNBA. Therefore, Thrive City will host the Valkyries Block Party on Saturday, May 18 from 2pm-6pm, with appearances by Bay Area artists E-40, Goapele, and Kehlani, to commemorate the event.

“It feels like we’ve arrived,” Valkyries president Jess Smith said for ESPN. “As much as I’ve loved saying ‘WNBA Golden State,’ that was a placeholder, and this is who we are. To be able to put that stake in the ground and begin building the brand equity and begin bringing our community together around this, it’s a really special moment.”

Of course Kehlani fans thought having the “Up at Night” singer was a brilliant marketing move and the internet is loving the Golden State Valkyries’ announcement video.

Now, the internet is calling for Tessa Thompson‘s inclusion into the Golden State Warriors’ marketing, since she plays the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s Valkyrie.

We’ll wait for her to show up in the next round of marketing.

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