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May 20, 2013

Charlotte Bobcats name-change announcement to Hornets coming Tuesday

    The Charlotte Bobcats will make it official Tuesday that they want to change their nickname, a team source told the Observer Monday.

            Sources already confirmed the Bobcats are moving ahead with plans to become the Charlotte Hornets as soon as the 2014-15 season. That would require NBA approval, but that shouldn’t be much trouble with the New Orleans Hornets giving up that nickname to become the Pelicans.

            Incoming NBA commissioner Adam Silver has said it would take a minimum of about 18 months to rebrand a franchise. That roughly coincides with the timetable to start playing as the Hornets in the fall of 2014.

            The original Hornets played here from 1988 to 2002, and thousands have advocated a name change for the expansion team that replaced the Hornets here in 2004. The Hornets’ teal-and-purple gear is still among the more popular color schemes in the NBA.

    CBSsports.com reported Friday night that the NBA was actively acquiring digital rights to names associated with a new “Charlotte Hornets’’ brand. The Observer confirmed Saturday morning that the team had decided it wants to become the Hornets. A Bobcats source said the timing of Tuesday’s announcement has been in the works for several weeks and is not in reaction to news reports over the weekend.

            Team owner Michael Jordan will be at the announcement, planned for 6 p.m. Tuesday at Time Warner Cable Arena. That will coincide with the NBA holding its annual draft lottery.

            The lottery will be held in New York at 8:30 and televised on ESPN. As the team with the NBA’s second-worst record last season (21-61), the Bobcats can pick no worse than fifth when the weighted lottery is settled.

Posted by Observer Sports on May 20, 2013 at 05:23 PM | Permalink


why 18 months for us and next year for New Orleans?

Posted by: bshook | May 20, 2013 5:57:32 PM

It`s not much,but at least it`s a start........

Posted by: TC | May 20, 2013 6:20:57 PM

Well, the bandwagon fans got their wish. It'll be interesting to see how many of them sit through what will more than likely be another grueling season. I got to see the bobcats post losing season after losing season (save for one) and will never get to see them turn it around. That's like a kick in the nutz to a fan who's been there since the beginning.

Posted by: Jason | May 20, 2013 6:41:06 PM

Jason please leave the city with all that non-sense, any original fan of Charlotte basketball knows that the bobcats will never turn it around (so youll be waiting forever)and that the city never wanted that team and they could never touch the magical feeling the Hornets had when they played, so ice those nutz!

Posted by: Jason Leave the City | May 20, 2013 6:48:13 PM

Sure can't hurt. Anything is better than Bobcats.

Posted by: John | May 20, 2013 6:54:09 PM

I'm 100% in favor of MY team, the Bobcats, changing their name to Hornets. What bandwagon are you referring to Jason, the one that everyone climbed on after another losing season? That makes no sense. Fans of this team simply want our cultural and basketball identity returned home.

Posted by: Adrian | May 20, 2013 7:10:35 PM

I know they keep saying 18 months, but I wonder if it's possible to do before this season? The NBA owns all of the digital and naming rights to the Hornets, and they have said that it would be an easy transition. I would think the apparel would be the hardest to get done right away, but why do they need a ton on the market from the get-go. They aren't going to sell any BOBcat apparel between now and next year. One last thing, I hope they slightly update the old Hornets logo and don't leave it as the new morphed N.O. Hornet. Take a cue from the bringbackthebuzz folks and use their concept logo and designs. They look sharp.

Posted by: ktown8 | May 20, 2013 7:20:10 PM

I was with the Hornets from day one. I started as a ball boy the first year then went on to be an intern.From there I took a full time job as mascot coordinator. Eventually I got to wear the costume we all remember as Hugo for a short period of time. All I can say is priceless memories and I totally support the change...Stevie

Posted by: Stevie Sims | May 20, 2013 7:44:19 PM

I'm thrilled about this, as someone who grew up a die hard Charlotte Hornets fan. Awesome!

Posted by: jm2009 | May 20, 2013 8:13:22 PM

Great move!!

Posted by: Jiggy Man | May 20, 2013 8:14:45 PM

Rebranding is never a bad idea if the product you've put out there has been consistently bad for this long. The team has to improve to keep the excitement of the name change from fading, but it's a good start.

Posted by: Alex Drake | May 20, 2013 8:19:01 PM

We Beelieved and we made history. Always a Hornets nest of rebellion!
Can't wait to buy my gear!

Posted by: Season Ticket Holder | May 20, 2013 8:48:06 PM

Maybe becoming the Hornets will make the losing more palatable like back in those first few years when no one cared because they were our team.

Posted by: Munson15 | May 20, 2013 8:51:14 PM

Obviously this is a popular change for Charlotte and the fans in the Carolinas. Now, lets just hope by the time Hugo and company come around, we'll see a playoff caliber team as well! Go Hornets!

Posted by: PantherDave | May 20, 2013 9:01:28 PM

Are they doing this at the Open House tomorrow night, or sometime beforehand?

Posted by: DWS44 | May 20, 2013 9:20:10 PM

scratch that last comment...should have read the whole thing first!

Posted by: DWS44 | May 20, 2013 9:22:18 PM

I just hope that all the fans that keep saying I will buy/only buy tickets if they change the name back to the Hornets actually follow through with purchasing tickets.

Posted by: Joe | May 20, 2013 9:35:52 PM

Do it this fall. If NO can, why not?

Posted by: Phil | May 20, 2013 9:37:27 PM

I like the name change, but I also like the current team colors. Would love to see them keep that colors after the name change. Teal is a fad color that is no longer popular. Purple silver or purple and pewter would be better than teal, if they don't keep the current Bobcats colors.

Posted by: Panther/Steeler fan | May 20, 2013 9:37:30 PM

Purple and Teal are the colors most closely identified with Charlotte, not just the Hornets. Under no circumstances do I want the B**cat colors to be a part of Charlotte Hornets 2.0. Most people still think orange is the Cats primary color yet is was fazed out years ago. Carolina blue was added as an accent yet it dominates the court. Silver/grey is the primary color in the logo but no where to be seen on the uniforms or outside the logo on the court. The Cats have an identity crisis. Long live our cultural and basketball identity, the Hornets, Hugo, teal, and purple.

Posted by: Adrian | May 20, 2013 10:08:11 PM

Can't wait to have our team back. No matter what the quality of the players, the Hornets belong to Charlotte. Bobcats were always Bob Johnson, and Bob Johnson was a failure in Charlotte just like George Shinn was.

Posted by: monty todd | May 20, 2013 10:24:39 PM

Well I've always liked the Bobcat colors, much more than the horrible purple and teal. That obnoxious color scheme, along with the stupid outdated bee logo, needs to stay in the past. Hornets version 2 can do better.

Posted by: saul | May 20, 2013 10:25:02 PM

Somebody on a sports show said that the Hornets will need new colors and a new logo....no way. We need the purple and teal; and, we need Hugo, the giant Hornet.

Posted by: monty todd | May 20, 2013 10:27:27 PM

The Bobcats current color scheme looks like a poor man's NY Knicks.

Posted by: Adrian | May 20, 2013 10:37:29 PM

yeah, thats the problem; a team name and mascot.

maybe its the fact that charlotte, usa is one of the smallest markets with 2 pro teams in the nation and frankly, most realize that the NBA is a bad product

Posted by: joe | May 20, 2013 10:49:21 PM

"Everything must change
Nothing stays the same
Everyone will change
No one stays the same

The young become the old
And mysteries do unfold
‘Cause that's the way of time
Nothing and no one goes unchanged"

The purple and teal were an ugly combination, but we accepted it. Now we have the Hornets and Hugo back. That's plenty. A new color scheme would be okay.

Posted by: Star | May 20, 2013 11:11:10 PM

And the orange was even uglier.

Posted by: Star | May 20, 2013 11:12:33 PM

Purple and Teal together warms my heart.

Joe, the NBA product is actually quite good these days.

Posted by: Adrian | May 20, 2013 11:17:58 PM

Rick, you blasted me on Twitter about a year ago when I asked you about a change to the Hornets. You used the word "delusional."

I think I deserve an apology.

Waiting at @Michael_Shaw.

Posted by: Mike Shaw | May 21, 2013 12:25:54 AM

Rick is eating crow about this name change. I find it humorous. Im also getting sick and tired of having to go to Stein and CBS to find updates on who we are interviewing for our head coach.

Posted by: James Blant | May 21, 2013 12:50:32 AM

Love the old name. Hate the old colors. Just leave out the orange an you can come with something better. Who wants to wear exactly what they were wearing a month ao in New Orleans ant way? That would be ignorant.

Posted by: Johnny | May 21, 2013 4:53:09 AM

James, if Rick would stop spending so much time having tea parties with his invisible friends aka "league sources" he could get you updates faster.

Posted by: Fred | May 21, 2013 5:11:31 AM

Johnny, they would not be wearing the exact color scheme that they had in New Orleans....first New Orleans had added yellow in the color scheme. 2nd, NOLA took OUR team....OUR mascot and put it on the floor in NOLA. We are taking it back....that is all.

Posted by: Josh | May 21, 2013 5:14:56 AM

@joe - just eat it and weep. Charlotte, USA as you call it is still better than timbucktoo or wherever you call home. Go Hornets!

Posted by: PantherDave | May 21, 2013 7:48:04 AM

While this can/should be a positive step for the franchise…it doesn’t mean as much if we can’t get some of the “Hornets” history. Maybe they can spilt the history based on the years the franchise was in Charlotte and New Orleans.

Posted by: TA | May 21, 2013 8:10:57 AM

It's gonna be a longggggggg Bobcats season 2013-2014

Posted by: on_and_on | May 21, 2013 8:57:55 AM

Not really "on and on". The NBA expedited the Pelicans transition, don't see why they can't do the same for the Hornets.

I honestly do not want to see them in that tired blue and orange next year. I want the Hornets colors and logo back NOW!

I hope Jordan doesn't change the colors. Don't mind an updated logo, but keep the colors please. They are unique among NBA teams.

Posted by: D.W.G. | May 21, 2013 9:06:18 AM

Hire 100 construction crews and get rid of Hugo the Hornet's yellow hair, Hornets play ball 2013-2014 season

Posted by: Original Hornets color scheme and logo | May 21, 2013 9:49:28 AM

Purple and Teal were such 80s Alexander Julian colors. Remember they came out at the same time those ridiculous Bill Cosby sweaters were popular. The Hornets name is fine, just don't go back to 80s fashion please.

Posted by: apauldds | May 21, 2013 9:54:35 AM

I am waiting by my phone patiently for a call about the open coaching position.

Posted by: Sam Vincent | May 21, 2013 10:45:13 AM

The city was painted Purple and Teal when the Hornets were in town, huge paintings on the side of the First Union building.An updated logo would be fine, but keep the original color scheme. Also, Bring back Bobby Phills #13 jersey and place it in the rafters of TWC Arena where it belongs.

Posted by: Charlotte Basketball | May 21, 2013 10:53:17 AM

The NBA did not expedite the Pelicans transition. Tom Benson (Pelicans owner), applied for the name change as soon as he bought the team in last April/May 2012.

If you count how many months that is until the beginning of next season 2013-14 (November 2013) that is excatly 18 months.

The first thing they did was apply for the name change and he already owned all the rights to the Pelican name, which made it even easier and faster.

Posted by: RobC | May 21, 2013 11:01:11 AM

The name change shouldn't have been necessary but since it's on the way I'd rather see an updated color scheme. Teal was an 80's fad color.

Posted by: Artofthefan.com | May 21, 2013 11:14:03 AM

I think bringing back the name, colors, and mascot will be really positive for the city. It wont make the team better, but it will soften the hard pill we swallowed when they left. Unfortunately, the franchise records, past players, etc. belong to the NO franchise, regardless of what they call themselves. So, we wont see Bobby Phills jersey hanging in TWC or have Muggy's assists and Dell's 3-pt baskets-made as franchise records. That part still burns me. But I will take this as a small consolation and move on. At least now I can break out some of my old hornets gear.

Posted by: Touche | May 21, 2013 11:15:20 AM

stop living in the past..........

Posted by: nam cewton | May 21, 2013 12:48:29 PM

I am completly agreeing with the bandwagon fan suggestion. I guess these "New Fans" will do what was done while the Hornets were here before. "The Charlotte Hornets had a sellout streak of 364 games -- a span of nearly nine seasons -- before interest began to sag in the final years and Shinn relocated the team." I am not a Transplant and dont live in the past. I just wonder how much of these fair weather fans will be around next year or two when the same team with a different name is still in the re-building phase.

Posted by: JMays95 | May 21, 2013 1:58:08 PM

Interest in the Hornets didn't sag till Shinn got into legal trouble and Shinn brought Ray Woolridge into the fold and they wanted a new arena or they were moving. Charlotte got tired of supporting Shinn. The NBA should have blocked the Hornets move just like they did Sac towns. Then we wouldn't be going thru this crap now. We would STILL have our Hornets.

Posted by: DaveT | May 21, 2013 3:15:41 PM

I'm glad that Michael Jordan and the front office executives are now seeing the light. I believe by bringing back the Teal and Purple will infuse the excitement back in Charlotte NBA basketball once again. Going forward, I believe it will save this struggling franchise who was cast that horrible name Bobcats after Bob Johnson. I believe it will help the team on numerous levels in terms draft picks, free agency, merchandise, and then some. Lets Bring Back the Hornets name.

Posted by: Sherrod | May 21, 2013 6:27:11 PM

From second to fourth in the lottery, all of that good luck with the Hornets name change is starting to work LOL. Pathetic.

Posted by: TrueBBallFan | May 22, 2013 9:25:55 AM

Get that pick and put together some package of picks and maybe Henderson for Demarcus Cousins, while making sure you hire a true coach with some experience and credibility.

If not, go after Alex Len, he is probably the best player at No. 4 that can actually contribute to this team. He is a true 7-1 guy, with 255 pounds, defensive minded that can rebound, block shots and actually score the ball. A decent passer as well.

Posted by: RobC | May 22, 2013 10:41:27 AM

Draft Len, re-sign Hendo and show some progress during the season, just not too much that we miss out on the next lottery.

Posted by: apauldds | May 22, 2013 4:45:19 PM

We have $600 million reasons to change the name to the Supersonics.

Posted by: nbaraiders | May 22, 2013 11:30:27 PM

wojo is saying clifford.

observer quick to the punch.

Posted by: charlottean | May 27, 2013 6:33:41 PM

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