New Orleans keeping Hornets through 2024
The New Orleans Times-Picayune reports:
And with an assist from the state, they did just that Friday, when the Hornets and the state announced an agreement in principle to extend the team’s lease through 2024.
There never has been much doubt about Stern’s ability to help engineer lease agreements, broker sales (the Hornets’ sale is pending), or extend carrots like All-Star Games in order to sweeten the pot when the pot needs sweetening.
Yes, we can doubt the depth of knowledge he and his enforcers have with regard to trades, player evaluation and basketball operations. At best, their work in that area — as de facto general managers of the league-owned Hornets — has been a mess. They’ll need quite a few things to fall into place in order to clean it up.
And we can question the wisdom of league ownership of a franchise. Virtually every move looks fishy, saddled by conflict-of-interest accusations. If the Hornets wind up with the No. 1 pick in the upcoming draft, the top-of-the-lungs yelling that the lottery was rigged will be heard from one end of the country to the other.