New Orleans Pelicans Rumors
May 21 at 7:20pm CST By Chuck Myron
TUESDAY, 7:20pm: The Bobcats made it official on Tuesday, as the team, via chairman Michael Jordan, announced that they have submitted the necessary paperwork to change their name to the Charlotte Hornets starting with the 2014/15 season. Their request now goes to the NBA Board of Governors, who next meets in Las Vegas on July 18.
A few words from Jordan via the team's press release: “This
is a monumental moment for our organization. After
undergoing an elaborate research process, we recognize that this is what
our fans want. We believe that making this change would not only
re-establish one of the most recognized brands in sports but would also
unify our fan base by bringing together our loyal Bobcats fans with
those who have fond memories of our city’s NBA predecessor.
Our fans spoke and we listened.”
MONDAY, 3:53pm: The Bobcats have scheduled a press conference for early Tuesday evening to officially announce the name change, tweets Rick Bonnell of the Charlotte Observer.
FRIDAY, 10:46pm: The Bobcats have begun the process necessary to change their nickname to the Hornets, a source tells Will Brinson of CBSSports.com. It doesn't look like the switch will take place in time for next season, since NBA commissioner-in-waiting Adam Silver told Bobcats season ticketholders last month that it would take at least 18 months to implement the change. Still, it appears the Hornets nickname, recently abandoned by the New Orleans Pelicans, could be back in Charlotte by the 2014/15 season.
Bobcats owner Michael Jordan has expressed a willingness to adopt the Hornets name, which would reunite the city with a moniker that left for New Orleans in 2002. The 'Cats began conducting market research in January on the possibility of a change, and the league has been working with the franchise to determine whether the switch would be beneficial. Jordan said in February that the results from a poll of the team's fans were "very mixed," but it looks like there's enough support for the effort to move ahead.
Silver told the season ticketholders there would be no legal hang-up, since the NBA, and not the Pelicans, owns the rights to the Hornets name. Brinson discovered that the league created and registered the NBAHornets.com URL this week.
The change might invoke fond memories in Charlotte, though it could lead to some bookkeeping headaches down the road, particularly when it comes to historical research of trades involving the former Hornets and the apparent future Hornets, one of which took place this past season.
May 21 at 3:23pm CST By Luke Adams
We received word earlier this afternoon that head coach Vinny Del Negro will not be retained by the Clippers, and Ken Berger of CBSSports.com says (via Twitter) that one of the primary reasons for the decision was the fact that Chris Paul wasn't a fan of Del Negro. According to Berger (via Twitter), the star point guard didn't back the coach to management at season's end.
Here are a few more afternoon rumblings out of the Western Conference:
- Another Los Angeles free-agent-to-be, Dwight Howard, apparently isn't a fan of his head coach either -- Dave McMenamin of ESPNLosAngeles.com reports that Howard voiced some displeasure and frustration with Lakers coach Mike D'Antoni in a meeting with GM Mitch Kupchak at season's end. However, McMenamin notes that the relationship between D12 and D'Antoni isn't irreparable, and former Howard coach Stan Van Gundy told David Baumann of Sports Talk Florida (Twitter link) today that he wasn't giving much credence to the story.
- A source tells Jimmy Smith of the New Orleans Times-Picayune (Twitter link) that there's "no merit" to trade rumors involving Eric Gordon.
- No teams have contacted the Grizzlies to ask permission to speak to head coach Lionel Hollins yet, tweets Ronald Tillery of the Memphis Commercial-Appeal.
- According to Ric Bucher of 95.7 The Game (Sulia link), the fact that the Sacramento arena plan involves a significant public subsidy wasn't insignificant when the league voted on the Kings' relocation bid.
May 21 at 11:16am CST By Luke Adams
The NBA's draft lottery is set to take place tonight, with the league's 14 non-playoff teams vying for a chance at the first overall pick and the opportunity to select a player from a crop of prospects that includes Nerlens Noel, Ben McLemore, and others.
The odds at landing the first overall pick are cited frequently, from the Magic's 25% all the way down to the Jazz's 0.5%. But what chance does each team have to land a top-three pick? Listed in the chart below are the odds each lottery team has at the first, second, and third overall picks, as well as each team's overall odds at landing in the top three.
May 17 at 10:00pm CST By Chuck Myron
As day three of the NBA draft combine comes to a close, updates are still coming in from reporters stationed in Chicago for the event, which runs through Sunday. We covered the news from the first part of the day in this post, and we'll round up additional items here:
- Robbins adds Victor Oladipo and Nate Wolters to the list of players the Magic have interviewed, which includes a total of 18 prospects. Trey Burke isn't one of them, but he'll likely visit Orlando soon for a lengthy workout and interview.
- Zeller has interviewed with 10 teams at the combine, and the Sixers are one of them, reports Keith Pompey of the Philadelphia Inquirer.
- Nerlens Noel told Andy Katz of ESPN that he's interviewed with the Celtics, Magic, Bobcats, Suns, Pelicans and Cavaliers, as Adam Zagoria of SNY.tv passes along. Katz also hears Gorgui Dieng and Jamaal Franklin are hopeful they'll be healthy enough to work out before the draft. Alex Len won't be ready to hit the court until August, but he's planning to talk with 15 teams at the combine, according to Katz.
- Dennis Schroeder is one of a pair of international prospects rumored to have received a promise from a team, and he said following an interview with the Bucks at the combine that Milwaukee could be a fit for him, notes Charles F. Gardner of the Journal Sentinel. Schroeder also sees a chance for playing time with the Jazz.
- The Magic interviewed Otto Porter during the combine, and scheduled a meeting with Kelly Olynyk as well, reports Josh Robbins of the Orlando Sentinel (Twitter links).
- Sean Deveney of The Sporting News counts Cody Zeller among those with a shot at becoming the top pick after an impressive showing in drills today.
- Vince Ellis of the Detroit Free Press adds Brandon Paul and Tony Mitchell to the list of Pistons interviewees. Paul has a workout with the team scheduled for later this month.
- The Oregonian's Jason Quick looks at the prospect interview process the Trail Blazers employ, and adds that GM Neil Olshey flew to Europe this spring to scout Rudy Gobert and Dario Saric, who aren't taking part in the combine.
May 16 at 9:03pm CST By Luke Adams
9:03pm: We'll post any remaining evening updates from Chicago here:
- Hoopsworld's Alex Kennedy tweets that international prospect Mouhammadou Jaiteh will forego Eurocamp and will work out for NBA teams instead, possibly as early as a group workout with Minnesota.
- The Oregonian's Jason Quick reports that the Trail Blazers met with James Southerland yesterday.
2:47pm: More afternoon combine updates from Chicago:
- Ben McLemore has already interviewed with the Cavaliers, Timberwolves, and Pelicans, according to SI.com's Chris Mannix (via Twitter). McLemore expects to meet with the Bobcats, Magic, and Pistons tonight, according to various reports (all Twitter links).
- Victor Oladipo will also meet with the Pistons tonight, tweets Keith Langlois of Pistons.com.
- Jerry Zgoda of the Star Tribune (via Twitter) adds Otto Porter to the list of prospects interviewed by the Timberwolves, but says the T-Wolves won't get a chance to meet with Oladipo, who was on the team's wish list.
- Jamaal Franklin tells Jason Quick of the Oregonian that when he met with the Trail Blazers yesterday, the whole meeting consisted of a psychological test (Twitter link).
- Andre Roberson met with the Magic yesterday, according to Josh Robbins of the Orlando Sentinel (via Twitter).
- Shams Charania of RealGM.com has a list of the 12 prospects the Bulls plan to work out on Monday (Twitter link).
- Jeff Withey is "extremely excited" to be meeting with the Sixers, writes Keith Pompey of the Philadelphia Inquirer.
1:35pm: We covered the Thursday morning updates from Chicago's predraft camp earlier today, but with so many tidbits surfacing throughout the day, we're starting an afternoon post to round up the latest notes:
- ESPN.com's Chad Ford hears that two international prospects have received first-round guarantees: Dennis Schroeder and Giannis Antetokounmpo (Twitter link).
- Michael Carter-Williams has met with several teams, including the Trail Blazers, Bobcats, Pistons, Timberwolves, and Thunder, according to various reports (all links go to Twitter). Carter-Williams is hearing he could be drafted anywhere between third and 15th overall, tweets Chris Haynes of CSNNW.com.
- We heard this morning that the Celtics had spoken to Cody Zeller and Glen Rice Jr. Gary Washburn of the Boston Globe adds a few more names to the list of Boston interviewees (via Twitter): Mason Plumlee, Rudy Gobert, and Victor Oladipo.
- C.J. McCollum won't meet with the Trail Blazers this week, according to Jason Quick of the Oregonian (Twitter link). However, he will meet with the Pistons tomorrow, according to Keith Langlois of Pistons.com (via Twitter), and has already interviewed with the Magic, according to Josh Robbins of the Orlando Sentinel (via Twitter). SI.com's Chris Mannix (Twitter link) adds the Thunder, Nuggets, and Cavaliers to the list of teams who have spoekn to McCollum, who has 15 total interviews scheduled.
- Robbins notes in a separate tweet that the Magic also met with Myck Kabongo.
- Isaiah Canaan will meet with the Wizards on Friday, tweets J. Michael of CSNWashington.com.
- Canaan, Andre Roberson, and Grant Jerrett all met with the Pistons last night, tweets Langlois.
- Charles F. Gardner of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports (via Twitter) that the Bucks met with Shane Larkin yesterday and will work him out later this month.
- Erik Murphy has interviews lined up with the Grizzlies, Clippers, and possibly the Pacers, tweets Robbins.
- Seth Curry will meet today with the Lakers, Rockets, and Knicks, tweets Bonnell.
May 6 at 3:42pm CST By Luke Adams
When discussing potential landing spots besides L.A. for Dwight Howard this summer, many pundits point to Houston as an ideal fit for the big man, given the Rockets' combination of young talent and cap space. Of course, the Rockets already have a solid defensive center in their starting lineup, but Omer Asik tells Jonathan Feigen of the Houston Chronicle that he's not letting the Howard rumors affect him.
"It’s all things that happen out of my control," Asik said. "I really
don’t know and I really don’t care. Whether it happens, we’ll see. I’m
just looking forward to rest and getting better for the next season."
Here's more on the Rockets and their Western Conference rivals:
- Although the Rockets are unlikely to exercise a team option that would pay him $6.4MM, Francisco Garcia would still like to find a way to return to Houston, as he tells Feigen.
- After explaining over the weekend why Kendrick Perkins is unlikely to be amnestied, Darnell Mayberry of the Oklahoman wonders if the Thunder big man is undervalued, at least by fans.
- If the Jazz don't spend heavily this summer, it will
be a "strategic decision" rather than an indication the team is
financially strapped, according to GM Dennis Lindsey (Twitter link via Steve Luhm of the Salt Lake Tribune).
- Despite an early exit from the postseason, GM Masai Ujiri isn't worried about the Nuggets, telling 9News in Denver that the team will "get ready for next season and figure out ways to fix it and get better." As Chris Dempsey of the Denver Post points out, a new contract for Ujiri figures to be one item near the top of the club's offseason to-do list.
- Following another unproductive season, Xavier Henry doesn't have a clear spot in the Pelicans' future plans, writes Jimmy Smith of the New Orleans Times-Picayune.
May 2 at 1:04pm CST By Luke Adams
While fans of playoff teams are watching to see if their favorite clubs can make it through to the second round, fans of lottery teams are still playing the waiting game. May 21st's draft lottery is still almost three weeks away, but at least this year's draft class has been finalized, with the NBA announcing this year's complete list of early entrants yesterday. As lottery teams continue to look ahead to the combine and lottery on the way later this month, here are a few draft-related updates:
- Sources around the NBA have told Joe Kotoch of SheridanHoops.com that the Magic and Pelicans would "strongly" consider trading down if either team were to win the draft lottery and land the No. 1 pick. We didn't see any top-10 picks traded last June, but perhaps that will change this year, given the general belief that the 2013 class is significantly weaker.
- Speaking of that first overall pick, Nerlens Noel continues to be ranked No. 1 on Chad Ford's big board at ESPN.com (Insider-only link), though there are plenty of other changes in Ford's list. C.J. McCollum, Dario Saric, and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope are among the risers, with all three ranked in lottery territory now.
- Although Noel remains atop Ford's list, fellow ESPN.com scribe Fran Fraschilla (Insider link) makes the case for taking Maryland big man Alex Len over the Kentucky center.
- Tim MacMahon of ESPNDallas.com explains why McCollum and Gorgui Dieng could make sense as draft targets for the Mavericks.
April 22 at 5:33pm CST By Chuck Myron
The Pelicans didn't hesitate to bring a seemingly unwilling Eric Gordon back last summer, matching a four-year maximum-value offer sheet from the Suns. This time, New Orleans doesn't appear to have reservations about letting him go. GM Dell Demps told reporters today, including John Reid of The Times-Picayune, that the team would consider deals for Gordon or anyone else on the team's roster.
The news is in keeping with what we heard close to the deadline, when it appeared the Pelicans were more likely to revisit trade offers in the summer than pull the trigger immediately. Part of the reason for that appears to have been the reservations that several teams had about Gordon's balky right knee, not to mention his contract, as Reid writes. Gordon would have to approve any trade that takes place from now until July 14th, since that's when the Pelicans matched his offer sheet from the Suns.
One deadline rumor linked the Warriors to Gordon in a deal involving Klay Thompson. Gordon counted Golden State and Phoenix as places he wouldn't mind winding up via trade, but regardless of whether Gordon would OK a trade to the Suns, that can't happen at all until one year from the time the Pelicans matched his offer sheet from them.
Gordon was out for the first 29 games this season with a patella tendon disorder and bone bruise in his right knee, the same one on which Gordon underwent arthroscopic surgery during the 2011/12 season, when he saw action in just nine games. He was under a minutes restriction for most of this past season, and averaged 30.1 minutes per game in 42 contests while shooting 40.2%, both career lows.
April 21 at 10:16pm CST By Zach Links
There are a lot of strong matchups in this year's playoffs, but the Thunder squaring off with the Rockets could be the most intriguing of them all. It's a pairing that didn't seem likely until James Harden & Co. started stumbling down the stretch, putting Houston in line for the No. 8 seed. Now, Harden has a chance to make OKC regret their decision to trade him and the Thunder get to show their old friend that they can still be a contender without him. Here's more on that and other items out of the Northwest..
April 18 at 9:11am CST By Luke Adams
The New Orleans Hornets have officially become the New Orleans Pelicans, the team announced today in a press release. The club's website and Twitter feed have been updated to reflect the change.
For Hoops Rumors' purposes, we will be referring to the franchise as the Pelicans going forward. Our Facebook and Twitter feeds for the team have also been updated to reflect the change.