After many competitive seasons in Charlotte and now New Orleans, things have become worse for a team and city that deserves better.
The Hornets, behind a solid coaching performance by second-year head coach Monty Williams are 12-35. For some teams, that would be cause to panic, but the Hornets have been remarkably tough to beat.
The record, which stands 23 games under .500, does not tell the true story of how much uncertainty the Hornets have faced since the NBA lockout ended.
Ownership is to blame for most of the Hornets’ problems. This is not a George Shinn production that is full of scandal. Instead, the Hornets are now owned by NBA commissioner David Stern and the league office.
Under their watch, the Hornets have endured a botched blockbuster three-team trade that would have sent mega-star Chris Paul to the Los Angeles Lakers. The trade would have netted a couple of solid starters, none of which was a player at the same level of Paul. But the combination of Kevin Martin, Luis Scola and Lamar Odom would have been a good start.
The trade that was approved was a deal that brought in a package that centered on Eric Gordon and a couple of draft picks.
For now, that deal has been a bust.
Lately, in order to drum up fan interest, the Hornets have added a promotion in which a celebrity announces the starting lineups. While this is marketing genius, it shows how little faith the ownership has in its fans.
Roster uncertainty has been a problem. Does Chris Kaman get bought out? Chances are he does not. And if not, how much playing time will he receive?
There have been whispers about re-signing Kaman after the season. But by failing to trade him for even something as insignificant as a second-round draft pick, it does a disservice to the organization.
The Hornets are in the process of being sold, are they not?
After last season, the Hornets remain in debt despite having the value of the franchise increase by five percent. They rank 26th out 30 teams in value. When the NBA bought the Hornets, it was for $310 million. The league now is expecting to sell the team for $280 million.
That would a sizable financial loss.
Who pays for that loss? Potentially, the fans would pay, in one way or the other.
There has been little mentioned about whether the Hornets will move to another city after the sale of the team. I would not be surprised if they do. The team and city deserve better.
Only time will tell if they get what they deserve.
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