New Orleans NBA Team to Change Nickname to Pelicans
New Orleans, LA
The New Orleans Hornets will drop their current nickname and change it to the Pelicans as early as the 2013-14 season.
According to sources by Yahoo! Sports, the team also considered Krewe and Brass as potential nicknames, aside from the Pelicans.
The NBA earlier said it has already aware of the Hornets intention, saying the league has final say on team names and colors.
The pelican is Louisiana's state bird and appears on both the state seal and flag. A New Orleans minor league baseball team used the Pelicans nickname in all but nine seasons from 1887-1959, and again in 1977.
Team owner Tom Benson has been planning to change the team's nickname since he bought it from the NBA in April.
Benson, also the owner of the New Orleans Saints, will encounter no problem using the Pelicans monicker as he also owns the rights to it.
Former owner, George Shinn, decided to retain the Hornets' nickname when he moved the team from Charlotte to New Orleans in 2002.
Earlier, Charlotte Bobcats team owner Michael Jordan expressed interest in using the team's original nickname, the Hornets, if New Orleans will allow it.
"It's definitely an interest down the road, but right now it's the New Orleans Hornets," Jordan told the Charlotte Observer. "We would definitely entertain the opportunity. That's as much as we can say right now. We've heard the community ask the question, and we would listen."
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