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Kansas City Hornets?

Ez Street

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The Kansas City Hornets?

Yep, that's the latest rumor being whispered around NBA circles, that the New Orleans Hornets might be in line to become the eventual tenant at Kansas City's soon-to-be Sprint Center.

The honeymoon between the Hornets, who relocated from Charlotte in 2002, and New Orleans apparently is over.

The Hornets are a dreadful bunch, going just 2-27 so far this season and well on pace to break the NBA's futility record held by the Philadelphia 76ers in 1972-73 (9-73).

New Orleans sports fans already seem to have bailed on the Hornets, who are drawing just over 14,000 a game ? that ranks 29th in the NBA out of 30 teams.

?We've heard a little talk about New Orleans,? Kansas City Sports Commission President Kevin Gray said. ?But you always have to consider the possibility of teams using us for posturing or leverage with their own city. I'm not saying that's the case with New Orleans, but we can expect to be in the middle of some arena battles elsewhere.?

New Orleans certainly would fit the profile of a team that would benefit greatly by relocating here. The Hornets play in the New Orleans Arena, which is only 5 years old but is not anywhere near the state-of-the-art condition anticipated for the Sprint Center.

And, let's face it. New Orleans has never proven it can handle another pro team other than the Saints. And even the Saints are rumored to be peeking at Los Angeles.

?It all comes down to what AEG wants,? Gray said. ?I trust AEG (Anschutz Entertainment Group) will make the best decision for what goes into the arena. Until then, there will be a lot of rumors and a lot of conjectures. There's going to be talk about Orlando or Sacramento or New Orleans.?

But of course the "It's not true" SPIN is now gearing up!


NEW ORLEANS ? With 20 seconds left on the clock, most of the fans started toward the exits. The hometown Hornets had fallen again Wednesday night, losing to the Bulls and staying ahead of pace to become the worst team in the history of the NBA.

The stands were depressingly barren. Forget empty seats. There were practically empty sections. No one is ready to call the experiment of New Orleans basketball a failure, but these are tough times.

?We're now traveling into the heart of darkness,? said Michael Perlstein, a reporter for the local newspaper who is working on an all-access book about the team and owner George Shinn.

The lack of success, both on the court and at the box office, has set the rumor mills churning. The latest has the team packing up and moving to Kansas City, where plans are under way to construct a state-of-the-art downtown arena.

On Wednesday, vice president of public relations Harold Kaufman knocked down the whispers.

?We love New Orleans,? he said. ?Our owner is committed to New Orleans, and our plan is to be here for the long term.?

The NBA league office concurred. Deputy commissioner Russ Granik said any talk of moving the Hornets again after just three years is just that ? talk.

?I think it would certainly be a little early to become overly concerned,? he said. ?They've got a lease for a serious period of time in New Orleans, and I don't expect there will be any effort to relocate that team.?

Granik is aware of Kansas City's desire for an NBA team, and while he wasn't overly optimistic, he didn't nix the idea either.

?We'll see,? he said. ?We have talked to the people in behalf of the arena, and we know what's happening there in Kansas City. I don't know what the chances are. It's obviously a long shot, but people are ready to take the risk.?

New Orleans is merely the latest team to be associated with Kansas City. It wasn't the first, and, as plans progress on the arena, it certainly won't be the last.

Kansas City Sports Commission president Kevin Gray said this week that he also expects to hear conjecture about Orlando and Sacramento being interested in moving to Kansas City.

Regardless of whether a move is in their future, the Hornets are struggling. For the second year in a row, the Hornets are next to last in attendance. A quick tour of the all-important luxury suites reveals too many unoccupied. In successful NBA cities, the only suites you can buy come in a wrapper.

Not even local rap impresarios, the Cash Money Millionaires, renewed their box from last year. When people who rap about putting 30-inch rims on private jets don't shell out money for the plushest NBA digs, there's a problem.

Team officials say they can ? and will ? have success in New Orleans. They point to plans to build a state-of-the-art practice facility next door, as well as community outreach and a long-term lease at the New Orleans Arena. The team's best players are hurt, and certainly the team will get better. With improvement comes fans.

That all might be true, but for now, it's more hard times for the Hornets, a team that's a pickup truck away from being a country song.

?There's a death watch on whether they can stay in New Orleans,? Perlstein said. ?That's how it is when a team is going through a struggle. Sure, the vultures are going to circle.?

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This just doesn't make sense to me. All franchises have their low times. Weren't the Hornets in the playoffs just 2 years ago?


Utah Jazz Retired Number's

#1 - Frank Layden - #7 Pete Maravich - #12 John Stockton - #14 Jeff Hornacek - #35 Darrell Griffith - #53 Mark Eaton

Retired Number's To Come

#00 The Bear (Best Mascot In NBA) - #4 Adrian Dantley - #32 Karl "The Mailman" Malone

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Perhaps the Hornets wouldn't be averaging such low attendance if they didn't suck so hard this season.

Just a thought.

Thought Bubble: Self-Control! Self-Control

The Hornets are now the laughing stock of the NBA, even more so than the Clippers.

I saw, I came, I left.

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We'd take the Kings back......................

I seriously doubt the brother's Maloof would move the Kings to KC. No offense but they have a hotel in Vegas, the city of Sacramento loves em and I seriously think they would want to keep them there.

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call your city's leader and tell them to stay far away from Mr. "SnakeOil Salesman" Shinn. there's a reason bad franchises are bad franchises.

Carolina Dreamin'


When a robotic Nixon is on the loose, we have a duty to take action.

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We'd take the Kings back......................

I seriously doubt the brother's Maloof would move the Kings to KC. No offense but they have a hotel in Vegas, the city of Sacramento loves em and I seriously think they would want to keep them there.

Trust me I know. Even mentioning KC as a possible place to move them is just leverage.

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Wait a minute, what happened to the speculation of the Magic moving to KC?


The CCSLC's resident Geelong Cats fan.

Viva La Vida or Death And All His Friends. Sounds like something from a Rocky & Bullwinkle story arc.

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Wait a minute, what happened to the speculation of the Magic moving to KC?

Well the current Rumors inclued the foloowing teams...

Orlando to KC

New Orleans to KC

Sacramento to KC

All three are probably out there for leverage purposes for new arenas.

New Orleans doesnt need a new arena, they just need an upgrade to their existing arena

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I'm surprised that the Bucks don't show up on some of those lists. Senator Kohl is trying to sell the team (or is willing to do so), and the Bradley Center just doesn't have the suites it needs for the Bucks to compete financially.

It's where I sit.

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Just as a little slightly off topic note, the Blues President (among other affiliations that puts him "in the know") has said St. Louis will get an NBA team at some point in the future, but they will not invest in that until the NBA gets set financailly just like the NHL needs to do now.

Apparently the NBA could be in trouble financially in a few years.

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Let's just face it. Ez Street is just dropping rumors to get everything in KC. :D


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press. It is the soldier, not the poet, who has given us freedom of

speech. It is the soldier, not the campus organizer, who has given us

the freedom to demonstrate. And it is the soldier who salutes the

flag, serves beneath the flag, whose coffin is draped by the flag, and

who allows the protester to burn the flag."

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