Thursday, March 18, 2010

Hooray! Jordan open to changing Bobcats' nickname

I just asked new Bobcats owner Michael Jordan a question and liked the answer I got -- he said he's open to changing the nickname of the Charlotte NBA franchise he just bought if enough people think that should happen.

Jordan said this after his big press conference Thursday, in a smaller interview session with five local print reporters, including both myself and The Observer's Bobcat beat writer, Rick Bonnell.

I've been advocating a name change this month in my column which Jordan said he had read. So when I asked him about a possible name change, he teased: "How did I know you were going to ask that?"

Then Jordan this, word-for-word: "The thing is that I’m open for anything. It’s a commitment. We have to go through the league. It’s a process. It’s a financial commitment.

"Am I willing to look at that and say can we go down that road? Yeah. If I get the understanding from the community, from the public, that we need it and it signifies change, yeah, I would do that.

"But once again, it’s a process. It’s a $3-million to $10-million investment to do that. I’m not afraid of that, as long as at the backside of that, the public is going to be happy about that, that it’s going to be great for the organization. I think it [could be] a new beginning. Yeah, I would do that. I would consider that."

Any possible nickname change would be a couple of years away due to NBA rules, but it's nice to see that Jordan will think hard about it. A new nickname would signify a lot to a certain segment of the population that thinks -- rightly or wrongly -- of the Bobcats' brand as tainted.

47 comments:

Bobcat Matt said...

I already posted this on Rick's blog, but it's worth posting again:
The stuff about changing the name has to stop! There is nothing wrong w/ the freakin' name, it's just an excuse for haters to not like the team. If they change the name I am going to send them an invoice for the hundreds of dollars I've spent on "Bobcats" merchandise. How confusing would it be to change the name now? It's a ridiculous concept.

Scott, LET IT GO...The only people who cares about the name are people looking for an excuse to not support the team. If they win games, WHY should the name matter? Changing the name 6 years into it is the worst idea I've ever heard.

T said...

What exactly would changing the name do?! The NBA is a global business and the Bobcats have spent 6 yrs trying to brand themselves, as with all sports teams there are Bobcats fans outside of Charlotte(not that many but some) and just because "a certain segment" who probably dont support the team or go to the games anyway dont like it we should change it?....It would be stupid & bad business to do that. I've been a Bobcat supporter from Day 1 and couldnt care less if the name was the Bobcats or the Johnsons I support the team whether there 82-0 or 0-82 same w/ the Panthers... You dont just change a name of a team because it sounds like a good idea and its kinda a slap in the face of those of us that have actually spent our time & $$$ paying attention to the Bobcats while the rest of Charlotte didnt give a damn....

whataboutbob_cats said...

Hooray! You're completely superficial and don't quite understand what brings fan support!

MJ does though. He gets it that success on the court is what matters, not changing the nickname for fickle people who don't like the name. If MJ and the basketball operations group puts a consistently winning group on the floor, the fans will come.

Even if some people hate the name, children will grow up and see the Bobcats. They will learn to love the name unlike their parents, who were too stubborn do so.

Anonymous said...

Charlotte Force, perfect name..to me anyway representing the many people of the armed forces here in the Carolinas.

Cedric said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Cedric said...

I think Jordan knows deep down the name Bobcats is a bit corny for a pro team. Scott appears not to be feeling this nickname since day one.
I am an artist (writer) with a love of uniqueness..Not 'copy cat' mentality.

The Bobcat name was a bit over used...You don't see any Bobcat gear here in Columbia because the name is just too common. I liked 'Flight' from the start and was glad the name Cougars was not chosen for the same reason. What made the Bobcats name stick was the GREAT JOB ON THE LOGOS...If they choose a name like FLIGHT I firmly believe the graphic artists can do the same quality of work. I AM LOOKING AT THE OHIO 'BOBCATS' playing now...Why not separate your region from common and overused nicknames. The name Flight does not have to have historical context, just a hook.
And I am not a band wagoner...I love this team. If you need some creative input for a name search ..Heck call on me.

Jiff65 said...

Enough with the name-change nonsense. The name is just fine. The haters will not become lovers because of a name change. We are not ten years old and the logic for the name change is childish. Let's move on to some real analysis instead of this cotton candy.

On and On said...

I agree totally with Bobcat Matt.

The way I take this whole argument is that the over-entitled population of Bobcat's haters think they deserve retribution for any number of things concerning NBA (Hornets leaving, Uptown Arena, whatever), and since this is the easiest way for them to feel like they have "won the battle" this is the petty demand - "Change the name and then we might support the team."

Get over yourself. You are not entitled to anything.

When you buy an NBA team, you can call it whatever you want. Jordan can do the same - and if he were smart, he would realize that 6 years of building a name brand shouldn't be thrown away on the whim that a few uptight, vocal, spoiled and starstruck people want a new name.

Do you think St. Louis or Seattle or Nashville would balk once if they got the Bobcats? They would be glad to have the team, whatever the name.

Anonymous said...

You need a life! I have read your column and Rick's. Many comments are from people saying they don't care. You seem to be so fixated on this it's ridiculous! Who cares just let them play ball and win!

Anonymous said...

Joint the official Name Change Group on facebook

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Charlotte-NC/Charlotte-Bobcats-should-change-their-name-to-Charlotte-Flight/333164135587?ref=ts

Anonymous said...

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Charlotte-NC/Charlotte-Bobcats-should-change-their-name-to-Charlotte-Flight/333164135587?ref=ts

Anonymous said...

Yeah Scott so do you volunteer to pay for all the Bobcats merchandise that becomes worthless - not because a new team came in but because some nitwits simply don't like a name? No consideration for people's economic sitation whatsoever.

Anonymous said...

Carolina Breakers

Kenneth said...

I have to agree with several of you. Bobcat Matt, Jiff65, and some other anonymous posters are all over it. This name thing has just been an excuse for many people to not support the team. Along with Johnson and Jordan not belonging to Charlotte Homeowners Associations, and the failings of C-SET. How long was Johnson dogged for that mistake? I didn't think I would ever say this about the greatest basketball player the world has ever seen. But in some ways I feel sorry for Michael. He clearly wants this to work. Who can blame any man for wanting to see his sons and daughter grow up in Chicago instead of attending Charlotte neighborhood watch meetings? Especially after he and the mother of those kids went through a divorce a few years ago. We don't know how much time he may or may not have been deprived of away from his kids. Yet he made sure to appease selfish Charlotteans today by telling them that he would buy a home here. Now he says he's open to changing the name. He is trying hard to show fans that he'll do whatever it takes to make them happy. Well Mr. Jordan, Scott Fowler said you read his article. I hope you have been reading "Scott Says" also. Take it from me, the sad truth is there are a lot of people in this city who will never embrace the NBA unless Larry Bird was the owner. Many of them will never support you even if you are the greatest basketball player ever.

Anonymous said...

Scott, Scott....I have witnessed people leaving comments about you being an uninformed idiot..and most of the time i disagreed, but dammit im about to jump on the bandwagon!! Just because someone doesnt like Scott, are you willing to change your name? And for 10 million? Wow Scott very disappointed with your line of questioning!

Sportsdon said...

CHARLOTTE QUEENS

Anonymous said...

Scott - Don't let these douchetards get to ya. The name sucks. Everyone knows it.

Kenneth said...

I agree with many of you that say this name thing has just been a excuse for some not to support the Bobcats. The same could be said for criticizing both Johnson and Jordan for not belonging to Charlotte Home Owners Associations and the failings of C-SET. How long was Johnson dogged for that? I never thought I'd have to say this about the greatest basketball player of all time. But in some ways I feel sorry for Michael Jordan. It's clear that he wants this to work. Who can blame any man for wanting to see his sons and daughter grow up in Chicago instead of attending Charlotte neighborhood watch meetings? We don't know how much time he may have been deprived of away from his kids following his divorce from his wife. Yet he still attempted to appease selfish Charlotteans today by teling them he would buy a home here. Now he says he'll change the name if enough people want him to. He seems to be open to do whatever it takes to make fans happy, but some area sports fans will never embrace the NBA unless Larry Bird is the owner. Mr. Jordan many of them will never support you even if you are the greatest basketball player of all time.

Anonymous said...

I agree with many of you that say this name thing has just been a excuse for some not to support the Bobcats. The same could be said for criticizing both Johnson and Jordan for not belonging to Charlotte Home Owners Associations and the failings of C-SET. How long was Johnson dogged for that? I never thought I'd have to say this about the greatest basketball player of all time. But in some ways I feel sorry for Michael Jordan. It's clear that he wants this to work. Who can blame any man for wanting to see his sons and daughter grow up in Chicago instead of attending Charlotte neighborhood watch meetings? We don't know how much time he may have been deprived of away from his kids following his divorce from his wife. Yet he still attempted to appease selfish Charlotteans today by teling them he would buy a home here. Now he says he'll change the name if enough people want him to. He seems to be open to do whatever it takes to make fans happy, but some area sports fans will never embrace the NBA unless Larry Bird is the owner. Mr. Jordan many of them will never support you even if you are the greatest basketball player of all time.

Jacob said...

I agree with many of you that say this name thing has just been a excuse for some not to support the Bobcats. The same could be said for criticizing both Johnson and Jordan for not belonging to Charlotte Home Owners Associations and the failings of C-SET. How long was Johnson dogged for that? I never thought I'd have to say this about the greatest basketball player of all time. But in some ways I feel sorry for Michael Jordan. It's clear that he wants this to work. Who can blame any man for wanting to see his sons and daughter grow up in Chicago instead of attending Charlotte neighborhood watch meetings? We don't know how much time he may have been deprived of away from his kids following his divorce from his wife. Yet he still attempted to appease selfish Charlotteans today by teling them he would buy a home here. Now he says he'll change the name if enough people want him to. He seems to be open to do whatever it takes to make fans happy, but some area sports fans will never embrace the NBA unless Larry Bird is the owner. Mr. Jordan many of them will never support you even if you are the greatest basketball player of all time.

Freedom Huggins said...

Please leave the name alone. I'm not a season ticket holder but I do go to the games and watch the ones I don't attend on TV. The people who are calling for a name change won't even truly support this team regardless. Leave the name alone...

Jim Mitchem said...

Public buy-in is important for this team to survive. But a name change isn't going to do it. What's going to get the blue-bloods from Myers Park to embrace this team is if the team embraces the community. Get the team out there more. Have MJ commit to one community appearance a week. Have big promotions that get people in the building. And yes, win.

A name change is irrelevant if these other things don't happen. In fact, a new name might appear as egotistical as Johnson naming the team after himself in the first place. (but just in case, dragons is cool)

Anonymous said...

CHARLOTTE ROYALS!!!

You could design the logo around the Charlotte crown logo...it would be sweet. They could be Green (money, banking) and Gold (gold rush) like the 49ers, or Blue and White.

Charlotte Knights
Charlotte Crowns

"Charlotte Force, perfect name."

Terrible name. It's not arena football.

headycat said...

Scott. I don't really know what your problem is, but us Charlotteans have read more positive articles from you about the Rae Carruth saga than we have the Bobcats over the years. THE NAME BOBCATS WAS NOMINATED BY FANS. Chosen over Flight and Dragons by the organization. The Bobcats have an established brand and are doing all they can to get on the same level as the Celtics, Lakers, and Cavs. People like you hold them back by writing your trash and causing controversy. The Charlotte Bobcats will be NBA Champions in the next 10 years. Not the Charlotte "Flight" or the "Dragons." Stop feeding the frenzy you attention-craving lunatics. Go Cats.

Anonymous said...

Leave the name alone! It's pretty sad if people are not going to support a team based on the nickname.

ericryanblake said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
ericryanblake said...

Names mean nothing. The Lakers, The Spurs, The Nuggets are all stupid names but their fans dont care because they win. Winning is all its about, not nicknames.

Cedar Posts said...

The NBA should have been smart enough to restrict the moving of team names, the Jazz belong in New Orleans, the Hornets in Charlotte. But the same can be said for baseball, football and hockey.

Twins could move to Tampa I guess, but how about the Broncos to Jacksonville? I never understood the Hurricanes in Raleigh, or Pittsburgh having Penguins. Penguins hardly sound like a formidable opponent. More at Cedar Posts

Anonymous said...

What about the Charlotte Homicides..lots of murders in Charlotte the home of crime

Randomguy said...

How does this guy keep his job?

Anonymous said...

I also think name should stay the same. Too much money and the name-changers are using it as a shallow non-support excuse. Three words will fix the whole thing: Just win baby. I'll close by saying "Bobcats" doesn't do that much for me, but it's really what's behind the name/logo/uni's that count, right? Come'on Charlotte get off your backsides and support this team like you know you can. You have arguably the best player of ALL TIME as your owner. He's made some gaffes but who hasn't starting something new. Let's make the Bobcats bigger than the Hornets ever where I say. Go Bobs.

Anonymous said...

Since they back on this kick change the gay city name and NBA name all at one time if you gonna change. Since this joint has been 5different names since Blackbeards days why not the Pirates? Change the city to Treasure City. Ditch the fem name.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charlotte,_North_Carolina

Anonymous said...

Change it to "CAROLINA AIR"

:)

dar456 said...

how about the charlotte jordans

Brandon said...

TO ALL FANS THINKING CHANGING THE NAME IS A BAD IDEA...

For the past 6ish years (minus the new Brown era), the Bobcats have been a team at the bottom. Fan support has been abysmal. People were practically begging Johnson to leave. And now there's change. Brown is bringing success to the team. Jordan, while he didn't have a good stint with Washington, at least brings hope that this team will get better (especially with Brown). If you want to bring fans in, sure, win. But if you want to erase the stench around that arena of years of failure, invest in a "redo". Getting a new name. Offer a deal to the fans that if they bring in Bobcat merchandise to the team store, they get a big discount off new merchandise. Mike, let this city know you're ready to take this team to a new level, starting with erasing any lingering trace of BOB(cat) Johnson's era. New team colors. New name. But pick a good name. The "Flight" isn't it.

And if keeping the "Bobcats" name is the best decision, AT LEAST change either the logo, the colors, or both. SHOW SOME CHANGE!

W.D. Eagle said...

1. Scott is right.
2. Bob Johnson DID name the team after himself (based on a recommendation from his son who thought it would be "cute" to do so).
3. Charlotte DID NOT select the "Bobcats" name from the 3 final options ("Flight" was the true winner--although certainly not unanimous).
4. TRUE. Bobcats are a "unique and indigenous creature" to the Carolinas (along with every other state from Maine to Mexico!)--bull crud reason to give the team that name.
5. If you don't desire a name-change, then you're probably a transplant from somewhere else (and that's okay...you just haven't built up enough civic pride yet to actually CARE about anything other than basking in the reflective glow of "winning" in your new city...and that's only marginally respectable).
6. TRUE. The Charlotteans that do not currently follow the 'Cats will probably not do so no matter what the nickname is (move these folks to ATLANTA in a big-a$$ bus that has "weak" painted on the side of it!).
7. TRUE. Fans will come in droves if this team wins a champiohship (making a name-change obsolete).
8. FALSE. The Bobcats win a championship before Jordan goes bankrupt and the city loses its second chance at the NBA...hence the reason to reinvigorate the fan base with a name change--actually selected by a MAJORITY of fan votes.
9. TRUE. A transplant myself (living here in Norfolk, VA while serving in the USN), I've got more Bobcats merchandise/gear than ANYONE in the QC (my hometown) and it would certainly not be a waste of my money if the BOBCATS name went away--if anything, the gear would become more valuable as a throw-back collector's item (try to find a cheap, authentic Larry Johnson Charlotte Hornets jersey on e-bay...not gonna happen, my friends).
10. TRUE. Nobody says the colors or logo even have to replaced--but a replacement is needed in the first three letters of the 'Cats nickname to give it more regional significance while encouraging would-be fans to be endeared by "our" team and to STAY onboard during the down years that are simply a part of major league sports (in-between championships, of course!).

How about Charlotte Queen City Cats (or Charlotte QC-Cats)...add the city's crown logo as a small badge somewhere on the uniforms so we can all sit back and say, "yeah, that's US out there...OUR city...OUR team" as fierce civic pride wells up in our beings even if/when WE'RE not winning...anyone?

dennis said...

Charlotte Airness. and use the jumpman logo(added nike sponsorship money)
it can go both ways, if the team is good, it's Airness, if they are bad, people can change it to Airless

Anonymous said...

All you people complaining here is some advice...
1. go out and make jordan money
2. buy the team yourself
3. dont change the name
4. if you cant do that, sit back, shut up and deal with it.

everything is a business...yes, even the NBA and its teams. businesses change their names all the time, especially when they undergo management change. Ask for your money back...lmao RIIIIIIGHT. try asking for our money back from all those damn bailouts for the big whigs. do u ask for your money back when the name on the back of the jersey changes....dont think soooooooo

W.D. Eagle said...

Anonymous,

Your guidance is certainly logical (i.e. "go out and make Jordan money") until you get to step #3: Don't change the name.

Now why in the heck would I wanna go back to college, use my last year of eligibility (yeah, I played on scholarship and do have a year remaining...a little old now, though!), amaze the crowds with all of the moves I learned while growing up playing in the parks/streets/gyms/Churches/schoolsof the Queen City, be selected as a lottery pick, take complete control of the NBA as its ELITE player, make a bottom-ton (read "butt") of money, just so I could go out and buy the Charlotte Bobcats and make no changes to the nickname to give it more credibility/likability such that gear would actually sell locally as well as regionally, even globally if given the right spin?

You're right, anymouse, it's all about making money, but could you please provide me/us with LOGICAL steps forward to make it happen?

As I'm certain your not a true local (again, not a big deal with the exception of you not seeing it "our" way--winning IS NOT the end all/be all in the QC--we're a bit deeper than that) you probably didn't realize that back in the day Charlotte Hornet merchandise was at, or near, the top of the league in sales--EVEN WHEN THEY STUNK IT UP (Kelly Tripuka, et al.), but folks WORLDWIDE bought the gear because of the colors/nickname/logo, etc. Bee-lieve me, in my worldwide travels I've seen plenty of Hornet gear ("Charlotte," that is) that sold well before Alonzo beat the Celtics in the first round of the '92 playoffs...making Charlotte a "winner" for the moment.

Hey, ANYMOUSE, let's put our money together and buy a franchise, but if the nickname doesn't sell--let's change it...

Hey, I know of some "Taco Hells" that are on the market up here in Va....think if we bought them out that we might wanna change that "delicious" name to something else in order to give it more global appeal and therefore actually make money off it?

Thought you might see it my/our ("name-changers) way :^)

headycat said...

HAHAHAHAHA W.D. Eagle,

You are some fan. I'M W.D. EAGLE AND I OWN MORE CATS GEAR THAN ANYONE I'M SO COOL. You're a moron for thinking we should change the name so we could have "retro" Bobcats apparel. Superfan, why don't you go back to Norfolk and leave all of your Bobcats stuff to people who love the team.

Anonymous said...

TarCats or BobHeels. Go Heels!

Anonymous said...

Bobcats was an awful name from Day 1.

Charlotte Flight is cool, but I'm partial to Air Charlotte.

Ties into history of aviation, sounds like a modern airline company, and is a less obvious/annoying nod to the current owner.

fan said...

This comment is specifically for Headycat about his/her response to WD Eagle. I carefully read WD's comments about the name change, but headycat obviously did not:

A. WD can not go back to Norfolk b/c he is apparently already there.
B. I did not think he was bragging about his amount of Bobcat gear, but rather trying to point out that b/c of a love of Charlotte he supports the city's teams regardless of nick-name or his location while serving our country.
C. The moral of this response is, "People who do not read carefully are doomed to give ignorant comments."
D. GO QC-CATS!!

Anonymous said...

I vote for Charlotte Royals, Carolina Cougars, Charlotte Barons or Charlotte Pilots. Carolina Breakers is decent too, but we're no where near the ocean.

Please no wimply singular WNBA style names like Flight or Air!!!

Charlotte Crowns is clever, but fans around the leagues will change that to Charlotte "Clowns" in no time flat.

cheap viagra said...

I loved Charlotte's when they were named Hornets, the time when Larry Johnson played for them, it was a fantastic team.

viagra online said...

I wonder if the bobcats will win this year! it's my favorite team!

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