The New Orleans Hornets will change their names to the New Orleans Pelicans next season, according to a press conference by the team's officials.
The logo will have a Pelican, the state bird of Louisina, which symbolizes the city and reminds fans of two key themes: the restauration and conservation of coastal fauna.
The team will remain the Horntes for the rest of the season, but for the following one will officially become the Pelicans. The new team uniforms have not been revealed.
Team owner, Tom Benson, who bought the team in April, was very happy with the change.
"It has been a priority to change the name to reflect our culture, our community and our determination," he said. "Our region has been badly hit in the last years and the only thing that stands out is the determination to return and fight and win. The Pelican symbolizes that," he argued.
It is the second time in history that a team changes its name without moving to a new city. The first time came in Washington in 1996-1997 when the Bullets became the Wizards.
- Nicknames can say a lot about a team. They tell you what region that team is from, or tell you something about the teams themselves. But some nicknames just don't work, for whatever reason. Here are the 10 worst. Photo: AP in English
- 10. Miami Dolphins: Nothing strikes fear into the heart of an NFL team like the ferocious dolphin, one of the nicest mammals in the sea. Photo: AP in English
- 9. Minnesota Wild: Do they mean the forests of Minnesota? The animals that dwell in them? Or is it the state of Minnesotans when they wake up to -15 degree weather for the second straight month? No matter, this nickname doesn't do much to inspire fear in NHL opponents, who are tougher than nails to being with. Photo: AP in English
- 8. Columbua Blue Jackets: There is no such thing as a blue jacket, but the team name supposedly represents 'patriotism, pride and the rich civl war history in the state of Ohio and the city of Columbus.' Why they randomly chose blue jacket to mean that, no one will ever know. To us, it sounds like a form of wasp. Photo: AP in English
- 7. L.A. Dodgers: This name doesn't work mainly because it belongs in another town. You see, the Dodgers were originally called 'Trolley Dodgers' because of the complex maze of trolley cars that weaved their way through Brooklyn at the turn of last century. The problem is, the Dodgers haven't been in Brooklyn in almost 60 years, and there are no trolley cars in L.A. -- just a maze of a freeway. Photo: AP in English
- 6. L.A. Lakers: Another region-specific nickname, 'Lakers' made a lot more sense when the team was first located in Minneapolis. But, continuing the trend of teams that leave for another town without changing their nickname, the purple and gold have been Lakers since moving to L.A. in 1960. Photo: AP in English
- 5. Carolina Hurricanes: One of many teams named after a natural disaster. Photo: AP in English
- 4. San Diego Padres: The early San Diego minor league team was named the Padres in honor of 'Fathers,' a term of repsect for Spanish missionaries. Somehow, we don't think 'Padres' would approve of beating Cardinals, Cubs or any other animals -- even on the baseball diamond. Photo: AP in English
- 3. Utah Jazz: Another ridiculous nickname, as the Jazz were originally located in New Orleans, which is the actual home of jazz, and not in Salt Lake City, the home of Brigham Young and Mormonism. Photo: AP in English
- 2. Atlanta Braves/Washington Redskins/Cleveland Indians: It's always nice to name your team after Native American stereotypes. Guess the New York Latinos or Washington Caucasians were unavailable at the time. Photo: AP in English
- 1. New Orleans Pelicans: And finally, we come to the newest NBA name, the New Orleans Pelicans. A pelican is not the sort of animal you would find in a fight anywhere, and like the dolphin, it is not an aggressive creature. The Miami Dolphins have been a part of the lexicon for so long we're used to it. But Pelicans? No. Photo: NBA.com