SBD/December 12, 2012/Franchises

Former Hornets Owner George Shinn Voices Support Of Bobcats Reclaiming Nickname

Former Hornets Owner George Shinn yesterday said that when the New Orleans franchise "relinquishes the Hornets name, Bobcats owner Michael Jordan should pounce on it," according to Tom Sorensen of the CHARLOTTE OBSERVER. Shinn said that the Hornets nickname "would be great for Jordan, Jordan's team and the community." He added, "It was never my name. It belonged to Charlotte." Sorensen notes the Hornets could "become the Pelicans as soon as next season," which would free the nickname." For "no more than" $3M, the Bobcats could "make the name theirs." Shinn: "I think they should use the colors, the mascot, all of that." One reason Shinn is "excited about the name change is because this is his turf." He is from Kannapolis, N.C., and name-change proponents "might appreciate his support and remember him more fondly." Shinn said, "The name will bring fans back." He added that if Jordan wants the name, he will "do anything he can to help." Shinn is a friend of Hornets Owner Tom Benson and said that he "wouldn't merely call Benson on Jordan's behalf," he would "go to him." He also would "go to NBA Commissioner David Stern" (CHARLOTTE OBSERVER, 12/12). Meanwhile, GRANTLAND's Carles wrote the Hornets "don't evoke the sense of pride that New Orleans demands." The Pelicans "sounds like a silly name, but it could be their silly name." There is a "risk in nontraditional names, but that risk pays off in the long run." A Pelicans rebrand "offers New Orleans a chance to have something that is legitimately their own after a decade of instability" (GRANTLAND.com, 12/11).
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