Ladies and Gentlemen: Your New Orleans Pelicans

Published on 3-Nov-2013 by Raoul Duke

Basketball - NBA    NBA Daily Opinion

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Ladies and Gentlemen: Your New Orleans Pelicans

With another NBA season underway, there will no doubt be the usual assortment of plots and subplots to appease the masses.

But right now, I'd prefer to discuss the new nickname of the NBA franchise based in New Orleans.

Some professional sports monikers appear to be completely arbitrary, while others are very specific to the culture and heritage of an area. When the Charlotte Hornets relocated to New Orleans in 2002, the nickname followed. In hindsight, this was completely ridiculous.

The nickname Pelicans has long been associated with New Orleans professional sports, specifically linked to minor league baseball.

In regard to any connection with the area, the pelican is the state bird of Louisiana, so that certainly makes sense.

Despite these truths, the nickname just doesn’t seem to work. For one thing, it's not the most intimidating nickname you'll ever come across. But at least their mascot is trying to make up for it.

Are real pelicans ill-tempered? I don't believe so. However, they do have that nifty throat pouch, which is cool as well as practical.

Perhaps the passage of time will improve the perception of the name, as many nicknames become so intrinsic to a team and city that they become second nature.

Personally, I would have preferred Brass (music) or Krewe (Mardi Gras) as a nickname for the team, but to each their own.

Since I am complaining about things over which I have zero control or influence anyway, how about that logo? Just not digging it.

The uniforms have a certain minimalist appeal, with New Orleans written on the front. I am not sure if those special Mardi Gras uniforms from previous years will ever return, but they will be missed.

Getting back to nicknames for a moment, it appears the Charlotte Bobcats will again become the Hornets, beginning next season. The nickname Bobcats will then presumably disappear into the ether, and all will be right with the world.

Except for one thing.

Let us not forget the relentless assault on logic and reason represented by the Utah franchise and its continued use of the nickname Jazz.

Still, while there may be a jazz club somewhere in that state, I'm still searching for a real lake in Los Angeles, one where a pelican can fish in its natural habitat.

Such injustice.