New Orleans Hornets owner Tom Benson might change the team name to the Pelicans, or something else. (Layne Murdoch/Getty Images)
The New Orleans Rougarou?
The attorney who typically represents the NBA when it comes to brand names for the league has filed trademarks for five potential team names for the New Orleans Hornets next year.
The five potential names are the Pelicans, Bull Sharks, Swamp Dogs, Rougarou -- a beast from Louisiana folklore -- and Mosquitoes. The trademarks were filed on behalf of the New Orleans Hornets NBA Limited Partnership, according to KL Chouinard of BehindTheBuckPass.com.
The Pelicans seem to be the leading candidate for the name change, according to a report earlier in December from Marc J. Spears of Yahoo! Sports, who said the team is also considering Krewe and Brass for its name. The change could come as early as next season.
NBA commissioner David Stern said in December once the news broke that "if it works for them, it works for me." He said he's sure whatever the name will be, it will be a fine name.
If it works for them, it works for me,” Stern said. “I don’t have any objections to anything that the Hornets want to do name-wise because I’m sure it’ll be sensible. … I’m sure whatever it is, it’ll be good. If (Pelicans) is what it is, that’s fine. … I think everything sounds good. I think Lakers, have you seen any lakes in Los Angeles? There’s the same amount of lakes in L.A. as there is jazz in Utah, or grizzlies in Memphis. I’m out of that business. Whatever works for a team works for me.”
Perhaps what makes the most sense is for New Orleans to execute a name trade with the Jazz, the team in Utah, which is known as the beehive state.