New Orleans Hornets to Officially Launch New ‘Pelicans’ Nickname

by January 23, 2013

It has been reported that the New Orleans Hornets will change their team name, logos and colors. And after sorting through various options, the franchise appears to have settled on “Pelicans”. A press conference is scheduled this week, during which the branding change will reportedly be made official. Per the Times-Picayune and Yahoo! Sports: “The New Orleans Hornets have scheduled a press conference for 3 p.m. Thursday in which it is expected that the team will announce its new nickname. […] The pelican is the state bird of Louisiana. NBA Commissioner David Stern said last year that he would expedite any name change which makes it likely that it would happen for the 2013-14 season. The team declined to comment Wednesday on the topic of Thursday’s press conference. […] The new nickname, colors and logo will be used during the 2013-14 season. The colors will be blue, gold and red. […] The Hornets had been expected to change their identity since being purchased by Tom Benson on April 14. Benson owns the rights to the nickname Pelicans. It has not been determined when Pelicans merchandise will be available. The Pelican is the state bird of Louisiana, which is known as the Pelican State. The Pelican is also on license plates, the state flag, the state seal and the state painting. The bird symbolizes Louisiana’s environmental recovery from oil spills. There was also a minor-league baseball team in New Orleans called the Pelicans from 1887-1959 and 1977 of which Benson was fond. The name ‘Pelicans’ has received a lot of criticism from Hornets fans and NBA followers. During the news conference, a video is expected to be shown explaining the history behind the nickname and what it means to New Orleans and the state.”