The Charlotte Hornets officially returned to the NBA on May 20, 2014 and immediately announced they will be unveiling their new jersey on June 19th. Tuesday’s press conference was highly anticipated by many NBA fans, not just those living in Charlotte. The Hornets merchandise and gear developed a strong following in the mid 1990’s, especially the famous Starter jacket.
The press conference opened with a video chronicling the journey of Charlotte professional basketball, beginning with the 1988 expansion team and ending with the exciting announcements over the last year by Michael Jordan that the Bobcats franchise would become the new Charlotte Hornets. Then Fred Whitfield, thePresident and Chief Operating Officer of the franchise, was joined by Executive Vice President and Chief Sales and Marketing Officer, Pete Guelli, to announce the name change.
While the announcement was more of a formality than anything else, there were several important dates set by the team. First and foremost will be the revealing of the Charlotte Hornets new “Hugo the Hornet” mascot. When asked about the design of the new mascot, the team said that he will be redesigned, but have similarities to one of the most popular mascots in NBA history. Hugo the Hornet will be revealed on June 5th.
— Charlotte Hornets (@Hornets) May 20, 2014
The second big date set by the Charlotte Hornets was that their new jerseys will be unveiled on June 19th, one week before the June 26th NBA draft. Many have regarded the Charlotte Bobcats jerseys as unimaginative and boring, so a chance to revive one of the more unique team color schemes has been applauded by Charlotte fans. There is already a lot of buzz going on around the internet in regards to potential new jersey designs.
CHARLOTTE HORNETS NAME OFFICIALLY RETURNS ON MAY 20! pic.twitter.com/cCbTmgziaN
— Charlotte Hornets (@Hornets) May 16, 2014
Probably the biggest announcement by the Charlotte Hornets franchise on Tuesday was that all NBA history related to the Charlotte Hornets would belong to them. Currently, the New Orleans Pelicans own the history of the Charlotte teams from 1988-2002. This is a huge deal and highly unusual. But, it was so important to the franchise that they were willing to fight for it with the NBA. Apparently, the New Orleans Pelicans were not concerned with keeping that part of their history alive. The Pelicans’ franchise records will now begin in 2002, instead of 1988.
The Charlotte Bobcats have been able to improve the product they are putting on the court every night. Now, they are hoping a change to the Charlotte Hornets branding will allow them the opportunity to boost sales as well as design a better jersey.
[Image via jocksandstilettojill.com]