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Report: Hornets to become Pelicans

 
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When Tom Benson bought the New Orleans Hornets, one of the things he said was that he'd heard fans complain about the team name and wouldn't be opposed to a change.

Looks like the fans are getting their wish.

The team reportedly is changing its name to the Pelicans, in honor of the Louisiana state bird, according to Yahoo Sports. The brown pelican also is featured on the state flag and seal.

Other names considered were Krewe (for the groups of revelers that take part in Mardi Gras festivities) and Brass.

The Hornets did not confirm the name change was final. “This is an ongoing process and still being discussed," a team spokeman said. "The eventual decision will be made by the NBA.”

Benson bought the team from the NBA in April for $338 million. The league had taken control of the franchise in 2010, buying it from previous owner George Shinn for $300 million.

The Pelicans were also a minor league baseball team in New Orleans for several decades. Benson already owns the rights to the name.

In an odd twist, the name change would open the door for Michael Jordan to return the Hornets name to Charlotte, a move he's said he would consider if the name were to become available.

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