NBA approves Charlotte’s name change back to Hornets… starting next summer


UPDATE 8:38 pm: NBA Commissioner David Stern made it official — the NBA owners have approved the name change of the Charlotte Bobcats back to the Hornets.

The change will take place after the 2013-14 season, so you’ve got one more year of Bobcats but the change the people of Charlotte wanted is coming home again. Great win for the city.

2:49 pm: Michael Jordan already announced the Charlotte Bobcats would change their name to the Charlotte Hornets, but the switch requires league approval.

That shouldn’t be a problem.

Rick Bonnell of The Charlotte Observer:

The NBA’s rubber stamp will hit the Charlotte Bobcats’ request for a name change to the Hornets at a Board of Governor’s meeting Thursday at the Wynn resort in Las Vegas.

The Bobcats technically need approval from a majority of the league’s other 29 teams to take on the name of Charlotte’s original NBA team. But it’s clear there won’t be resistance, after the New Orleans franchise gave up that nickname to be called the Pelicans.

Incoming NBA Commissioner Adam Silver said twice during visits to Charlotte that he is for this name change if Bobcats owner Michael Jordan wants it. And outgoing Commissioner David Stern advocated a name change, according to a source familiar with Stern’s thinking.

I love this change and can’t wait until 2014, when it takes effect. Bobcats was a lame name without meaning besides sharing a syllable with the team’s former owner. Hornets has a centuries’ old history in Charlotte and is a much better fit.

Players’ union, NBA to set up cardiac screening for retired players

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First it was Darryl Dawkins. Then it was Moses Malone.

Two all-time great players who recently died — and at t0o young an age, 58 and 60 respectively — from undiagnosed heart conditions. Even before that, recognizing the issue the NBA players union and the league itself were setting up supplemental health coverage to provide cardiac screening for retired players, something ESPN’s Jackie MacMullan recently broke.

The joint effort between union executive director Michele Roberts and NBA commissioner Adam Silver — at a time when there still may be potentially acrimonious labor negotiations looming for their sides — is intended to ease the health concerns of its retired players.

Roberts said action from the players’ association on providing screening for its retired players is “imminent.”

“I wish I could give you an exact timetable, but we have to make sure all the components are in place,” Roberts told ESPN recently. “I will tell you we hope to have something sooner than later.”

The Cardiologists are affiliated with the NBA already, and some of the money will come from the league, while the union is both pitching in a chunk of cash and is the one organizing this, according to the report.

It’s good to Roberts and Silver working together on this. While you’d like to think this would be the kind of no-brainer move that the league and union would work together on, in the past the relationship didn’t always facilitate this sort of cooperation even on the obvious.

I’d like to think this bodes well for future labor talks, but I’m not willing to completely draw that parallel.


Stephen Curry drops 30 on Portland in preseason (VIDEO)

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Somebody is in midseason form.

Stephen Curry put up 30 on Portland in a preseason game Thursday night, hitting six threes and getting to the line 15 times over the course of his less than 26 minutes. It was quite a show.

Portland won the game 118-101 behind 25 points from Allen Crabbe and 22 from Damian Lillard. Not a lot of defense in this one but it was fun to watch.