The New Orleans Hornets are a central example of what is wrong with the NBA as a business as the league enters the 2011 (to 2012?) lockout. The Hornets do contend for the playoffs annually and feature one of the league's premier players in Chris Paul. Yet the team fails to be financially viable or draw fans on a consistent basis.
The NBA has been unable to find a new local ownership that would keep the team in New Orleans. Even post-Katrina sympathizers are out of arguments for the Hornets as the local community has been able to rally around and support the Saints. And this is a market that has already seen one NBA franchise, the Jazz, come and go.
While relocation is never welcomed in a sport, all indications point towards the Hornets needing to leave New Orleans for the health of their franchise and for the NBA. Here are five cities that could become the new home of the Hornets.