- Photo: Reuters
Charlotte Bobcats owner Michael Jordan is changing his team name back to the Hornets and it could take effect as early as the 2014-15 season albeit some confusing situations.
Jordan is scheduled to reveal his plan for the team in a press conference to be held later today, the Associated Press reported.
The name change may cause a tricky scenario for statistics keepers and sports historians because there already is a Hornets team.
The Charlotte Hornets existed the first time from 1988-2002. Declining attendance forced owner George Shinn to relocate to New Orleans and then to Oklahoma after Hurricane Katrina decimated New Orleans. After not having a team in Charlotte for two years, the Bobcats were formed in 2004.
However, the story gets more confusing. Eventually the Hornets were able to get back to New Orleans and Oklahoma City took on the Seattle Supersonics and made them the Oklahoma City Thunder in 2008. Now, the Hornets are on the move again, to Seattle, and they will be called the Pelicans.
The history record books will now have two different Hornets teams to differentiate between, one becoming the Hornets from the Bobcats, and one going from Hornets to Pelicans. Also, in that mix there will historically be two different Seattle teams, two different Oklahoma City teams, and two New Orleans teams, with the Utah Jazz originating from there.
To change a team name is ''an enormously complex process and a very expensive process for the team. From everything to the uniforms, to the building, to the letterhead to the signs on the offices- all of that has to be taken into account," said Adam Silver, COO and deputy commissioner of the NBA.
Every month, Jordan writes a column on the Bobcat's website where he addresses the fans and the state of the team. He conducted a poll to figure out what to name the franchise, but according to the Associated Press, was not sure whether that would factor in on his decision.
''Judging from the emails you've sent me, the opinion seems to be very mixed,'' Jordan said according to the team's website. ''Some of you have said we should change the name and some of you have said we should not. In fact, a few of you even suggested that we should change the name to something new altogether, and not use Bobcats or Hornets.''
Perhaps a fresh start for the Bobcats is what they need as the team has only made the playoffs once and was swept in four games. The 2011-12 season also saw them feature the worst record and winning percentage in basketball history, going 7-59 (.106) winning percentage.