OK, so the charade that is the David Stern era of the New Orleans Hornets is finally over.
It is now time for the Tom Benson era to begin in the Big Easy.
Mark me down as one willing to go out of my way to drive Stern to the airport – never to be seen or heard from ever again.
Sure, Tom Benson has his faults.
Heck, as one who isn’t a Saints fan, I’ll be the first to volunteer to use this space to point them out.
Let’s start with the obvious – he’s not the most passionate guy in the world about sports. He likes to cut costs any chance he can.
His only saving grace as the Saints’ owner was signing a quarterback no one else wanted because of injury – a fella by the name of Brees – maybe you’ve heard of him.
And heck, even after reaching the summit with Drew Brees, the owner still had the nerve returned back to his penny pinching ways. He has reportedly refused to give the quarterback a lucrative contract extension to keep him in New Orleans forever.
Yeah, that’s not the ideal sports owner.
But he’s still better than David Stern.
The biggest reason why I’m excited about the Benson Era for the Hornets is because it virtually guarantees the Bees will be in Louisiana for the extended future.
Let’s forget about that time the owner tried to pawn the Saints off onto San Antonio – they already have a basketball team of their own – all signs point to Louisiana being the Hornets’ home for the future.
Heck, Benson even went on record this week and said he wants to change the franchise’s name from “Hornet” to something more Louisiana-based.
So this is where I’m going to step up to the plate, do my civic duty and lend the businessman a hand.
I know from my vast research that several sporting franchises have been named or renamed through newspaper contests.
OK, I lie. I didn’t do any research at all. I actually just heard someone say that on TV.
But either way, I am offering up our humble abodes to start off such a contest right now.
Here are a few suggestions I have for the future name of the team – some conventional and some not.
Anyone with similar suggestions should feel free to drop us a line on Facebook or on our website.
The Food Choices
New Orleans Crawdads
OK, so the Crawdads would be an easy and safe choice. Louisiana has a ton of crawfish – the most in the world. Likewise, the colors red and black or red and white would be a complete overhaul from the team’s current turquoise and white. But a crawfish isn’t a very intimidating species and they are most known for being boiled and eaten – that has me a little weary of this choice.
The New Orleans Spice
Maybe a specific food isn’t the way to go at all. Maybe we should play to our seasoning excellence. Spice would be a fairly creative name and with it, the team could have any colors and any mascot they’d want. My biggest concern with this name is that when I say it, I think of the Spice Girls. I don’t know about you, but that just makes me want to vomit.
The Animal Choices
New Orleans Gators
This is the easiest of the group – what would Louisiana be without our mighty alligators? Heck, I tell you, we’d be a place free from reality shows – that’s for sure. So, the fierce and ornery gator (ornery because he has all them teeth and no toothbrush) would probably have to lead the pack among animal choices, right? Green with black pen stripes would possibly be a good look. My biggest opposition is that the University of Florida has this name already and no LSU grad would ever support copying those guys in any capacity.
New Orleans Pelicans
The pelican is our state bird and to me, is a truly beautiful animal. So with that in mind, it’d seem like the bird would have to be considered somewhere in this process. But the problem is that the colors are not conducive to a good look at all. I can’t think of any professional sports team that could pull off brown uniforms. Heck, the color brown is so wretched that even the NFL’s Browns wear orange helmets that they just lie and say are brown. So to me, that thwarts the pelicans’ chances, only slightly.
The Other local favorites
New Orleans Carnival
What is Louisiana without Carnival? Adding a Mardi Gras theme to the NBA franchise would be about right, eh? I could imagine the rich purple and green colors within the uniforms – very similar to those the team already has. Likewise, I could see a fun logo with Mardi Gras beads and/or some sort of festive theme. But Carnival just sort of seems too obvious to me. In Louisiana, we tend to try and make an easy situation more difficult than it needs to be.
New Orleans Hurricanes or New Orleans Canes
I’ve always thought Hurricane was a cool sporting name. Heck, I’m not even a fan of the University of Miami, either. But this one is hot and cold. On one hand, Hurricane is a big part of Louisiana and the climate. But on the other is the obvious devastation they have caused the city. This one is an option, but it’s obviously a risky choice and one that I’d lean toward nixing from the list.
New Orleans Flames
Speaking of climate, it gets pretty hot in Louisiana. So for those reasons, I throw this one onto our radar. I think a modern-looking logo of a sun burning bright hot would be a great look for any mid-court. But the problem is that the NBA already has the Phoenix Suns and the Miami Heat, so I’d probably want a look that is a bit more original.
And a few random choices
New Orleans Royals
I don’t know why, but I saw someone propose the Royals on a message board and the name just sort of rubbed me the right way. Sure, the Kansas City Royals exist in baseball and they are centered on the bird. But I’d propose doing the royals more along a monarchy theme and having a logo based on a crown of some sort. Maybe I’m leading us down a dead end with this one, but I think the name is sort of cool.
New Orleans Passion
I’m a fan of abstract names like “Magic,” “Heat,” etc. So I think passion would maybe be an interesting one to consider. I’m not fully sold on the word itself and maybe another rich, but equally abstract word is the way to go. But I just think there could be some fun to be had with that name. I also believe it’d inspire and challenge a fan-base that needs a bit of a spark.
So anyway, those should get us started. Feel free to shoot any suggestions you have to us.
The David Stern era is over in New Orleans
Let the Good Times Roll!