August 27, 2007

Introducing, again, your Hornets.: Sometimes, it has been tough to believe in New Orleans. Yes, the Hornets have tried to entrench themselves in the community after two seasons in Oklahoma City. They brought home a multi-million-dollar business with more than 100 employees; they have done charity work and rebuilt 20 homes. All the while, they've been preaching that the Hornets are fuel for a post-Katrina revitalization. But then, just when they think they're as New Orleans as jazz, someone will say, "The Hornets are back?" Benjamin Hochman of The Times-Picayune takes a stern look at the seemingly monumental task the New Orleans Hornets are facing in their upcoming full-season return to Louisiana.

posted by Ufez Jones to basketball at 06:31 PM - 4 comments

I would just like to say that if the Hornets are not embraced in New Orleans (poor record, attendance, the success of the Saints) for whatever reason, the fine people of OKC would love to have them come back. They had 30 sellouts in two seasons in OKC and the people there loved the game. We have the accomodations and desperately want a team, but it is hard to get one started in the NBA. You have to be a large market city. But, if the Hornets couldn't make it in Carolina where basketball is supreme, I doubt that New Orleans will all of the sudden start to have very many sellouts. Just using the past as an educated guess. I hope that I am wrong, but only time will tell.

posted by Mickster at 01:50 PM on August 28, 2007

Yes, please take the Hornets back to OKC and leave my Sonics alone.

posted by chamo at 03:43 PM on August 28, 2007

don't worry chamo, I believe that the commish has already squashed the notion that they would be coming here. I know that the owners are (at least one or more) from an OKC based group trying to get them into the new Ford Center, but the Sonics have always been in WA. I don't think they will be moving, unless the people don't appreciate them enough to go and watch them. I only say this as I have watched good teams get moved because of the all mighty dollar more than once. I would protect what you have and encourage people to go. It seems that the Sonics have a great young team and with the addition of Durant, they could really be a respectable team this year. If not, ........ always they lurk in the dark?

posted by Mickster at 07:08 PM on August 28, 2007

Obviously I need to remind you people of a few facts, but first an opinion; George Shinn is a piece of crap. The rape allegations are old news and, I'm sure, in most of the country looked upon as one of those things that happen to well-known men who aren't careful. Just some chippy looking to get rich. Problem for Shinn is that it turned out this girl wasn't the first who felt she was taken advantage of out at his palace in the sticks of South Carolina, just the first to get a lawyer. As a side note, I'm curious where George lives in La. Bet it's not in the city of New Orleans. He likes to be the most important guy in town. Somebody in NO clue me in. Now here are some facts. Shinn is a disaster as an NBA owner. Charlotte was once the hottest ticket in the Association. They had 21,000 season ticket holders. They posted an astounding 358 straight sellouts. 358. Almost nine full seasons without an empty seat for a team that missed the playoffs about half of the time and never made it past the second round. And George Shinn pissed it all away. Through a series of really bad decisions (anybody remember that brilliant Kobe Bryant for Vlade Divacs trade?), refusals to pay popular stars the going rate (i.e. Larry Johnson in his prime), and interminable whining about the ten year old building the city had built for him when the team came, Shinn managed to alienate one of the loyalest fan bases the NBA had ever seen. They still loved the team, they just hated the owner. So you guys in NO and OKC go ahead and fight it out. Just keep in mind the prize, well, ain't no prize.

posted by gradioc at 06:30 PM on August 29, 2007

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