A year ago the sports world and bug enthusiasts alike where shocked to hear that the NBA’s New Orleans Hornets would be changing their name to the New Orleans Pelicans.
The name change marked the end of an era, as there are no longer any major professional sports teams (i.e. NBA, NFL, NHL, MLB) left with an insect as their mascot.
Sure, there are a few NCAA team with insects as mascots, like the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets, the Richmond Spiders, and the UC Santa Cruz Banana Slugs. Still, there are no more major professional sports teams named after bugs.
This anti-bug-mascot trend is all about to change, as Charlotte Bobcats owner Michael Jordan recently announced they were dropping their Bobcat mascot in favor of the Hornet once again.
As soon as the NBA’s New Orleans Hornets opted to change their name to the New Orleans Pelicans, Charlotte Bobcats owner Michael Jordan knew right away that he wanted to get back to his team’s roots.
During halftime of a late December 2013 game against the Utah Jazz, Jordan announced at center court that the name change would happen by the 2014-2015 season. Along with the name change, the team’s logo and colors will be updated as well.
Charlotte’s NBA team was previously named the Hornets from 1988-2002 when the team was moved to New Orleans.
The primary logo utilizes the purple and teal color palette and features an aggressive-looking hornet that is ready to attack. Its piercing eyes, raised antennae, expanded wings and pointed stinger depict its relentless intensity. Incorporated within the logo is a basketball that doubles as the hornet’s body. The Charlotte Hornets wordmark is written across the insect. The logo contains several odes to that of the original Hornets with its white wings, white accents within its eyes, a stinger and the inclusion of a basketball.
The logo represents several characteristics of actual hornets, including their swarming and attacking nature, along with their fierceness and relentlessness when protecting their nests. These same characteristics connect with the city of Charlotte itself. The city’s rebelliousness, aggressiveness and protective attributes date to the Revolutionary War when British commander General Cornwallis referred to Charlotte as “a hornet’s nest of rebellion.”
“The logos are the foundation of an organization’s brand identity, and our goal was to design logos that would have awareness, be relevant and resonate with our fans,” said Bobcats Sports & Entertainment President & COO Fred Whitfield. “We developed a logo that physically depicted the characteristics and DNA of the type of team we want on the court, as well as those of hornets and the city of Charlotte.”
As bug and insect aficionados, all of us here at Bulwark Exterminating would love to see more insect mascots in professional sports. Let’s give some of these pests the real respect they deserve!
I for one am shocked that there is not a professional sports team in Arizona named “The Scorpions.” With as prevalent as scorpions are in the state of Arizona, and the malevolence of their stings, you thing some team would have adopted the nickname.
Fire Ants, Scorpions, Spiders, Bees, even Tarantulas would make for a pretty cool mascot in my humble opinion.