April 15, 2012; New Orleans, LA, USA; From left New Orleans Hornets Hornets president Hugh Weber , NBA governor Jac Sperling , Jennifer Lauscha , New Orleans Saints executive vice president Dennis Lauscha , wife Jennifer Lauscha , Hornets new owner Tom Benson and wife Gayle Benson in attendance during the first quarter of a game against the Memphis Grizzlies at the New Orleans Arena. Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-US PRESSWIRE
Significant news from Jimmy Smith at what's left of the Times-Picayune. Hugh Weber will not be maintained in his position as team President, with that role now going to Dennis Lauscha, who carries the same responsibilities with the New Orleans Saints. Weber became a very vocal, visible, and accessible face of the team during the period of NBA ownership. He often gave out his email address at team functions and personally attended most (if not all) of the "100 in 100" season ticket holder events that took place last summer and allowed the Hornets to reach the 10,000 season ticket holder goal. It was perhaps inevitable that Weber would be a casualty of this transition as his ties to previous owner George Shinn (his brother-in-law) were all too apparent. However, in stepping up to become the face of the franchise and spearheading several successful initiatives (season ticket sales, corporate sponsors) during this difficult period for the team, Weber has certainly earned the gratitude of New Orleanians and Hornets fans all over. Mr Benson himself stated that this sale would not have happened without Hugh Weber's efforts. Best of luck to Hugh.
There are some other notes in Mr. Smith's article (that you should read in its entirety), including Mickey Loomis (Saints GM) stepping into a role overseeing basketball operations. The ever-popular re-branding issue pops up again, with Smith stating that the New Orleans NBA franchise could have a new name as early as the 2013-2014 season, though no formal request has been made as of yet. It appears Mr. Benson is not backing off on his desire to name the team something "New Orleans-y."