Sources: NBA Selects Hockey Chairman to Lead Hornets

by December 05, 2010
17 has the scoop: “As the NBA moves toward buying the New Orleans Hornets, a league source has identified a potential administrator to run the team on an interim basis — Jac Sperling, vice chairman of the Minnesota Wild. Sperling would be charged by the NBA with running the Hornets while overseeing their sale to a permanent buyer. The league has said it wants to keep the franchise in New Orleans, but the team can opt out of its lease if it averages less than 14,213 fans over a span of 13 home games from Dec. 1 to Jan. 17, according to the New Orleans Times-Picayune. The 13-5 Hornets were averaging 13,826 with four more games to go before the deadline. These developments follow SI’s original report last week that the league discussed during its October board of governors meeting a takeover of the Hornets from owner George Shinn, who wants to unload the team but hasn’t been able to find a buyer. Two league sources tell they expect the NBA to take control of the Hornets soon. “It could happen within 48 hours,” said one of the sources on Saturday.”