The Hornets will play next season with a fresh start in a great sports city.
The New Orleans Hornets will no longer buzz around haphazardly as a struggling team without a true home. Instead of buzzing they'll be...eating fish...and stuff in New Orleans.
On a serious note, the Hornets' new owner Tom Benson has successfully changed the New Orleans franchise for good (via NBA.com). At the beginning of the 2013-14 NBA season, the Hornets will be known as the Pelicans.
The team will don new uniforms and a few new logos, all with ties to life in N'awlins.
This name change couldn't come soon enough. The Hornets have been mediocre since their move to New Orleans during the 2002-03 season and have made the playoffs in five of their 10 seasons in town.
Whether or not you consider the Hornets a successful team since moving to the Big Easy, you can't argue that they have exactly thrived in one of the best sports towns in the nation. In a city that shows insane support for their beloved NFL franchise, they've had a hard time connecting to the Hornets franchise.
While talking to ESPN.com, team owner Tom Benson described the Hornets moniker as a name that "didn't mean anything to the community." Having a team that the fans can't connect to can have a huge affect on fan turnout and support.
The name change was made in an effort to connect with the New Orleans community, which could do wonders for the team.
The Hornets have been rough this season, with a record of 14-28 so far. The Hornets are rebuilding their team, bringing in players like Anthony Davis, Austin Rivers, Ryan Anderson and Eric Gordon, who are all capable of being part of a solid foundation for a talented franchise.
As the Hornets continue rebuilding their team, the name change will prove to be a great decision.
Players will be able to really connect with their fanbase. They'll no longer be a franchise without a true home. Fans will have another New Orleans franchise to be proud of as they buy new jerseys and logos.
The team has a chance to start over in a city that loves its sports teams. Now, with a mascot that shares a strong connection with the city, the team can start anew with their young players and begin as if they were a completely new franchise. They can forget about losing Chris Paul and losing games as they start a new basketball life in New Orleans next year.