The Charlotte Bobcats will not only return to the city's NBA roots with a name change next summer, but they will also return to the familiar teal and purple palette so beloved by Hornets fans.
Bobcats management is expected to make a formal announcement later today, but confirmed it to the Charlotte Observer earlier.
"We thought it was very important for us to listen to our fans and the overall community. There seemed to be an overwhelming desire to pay homage to the legacy of the Hornets, from their time here before," Bobcats President Fred Whitfield said. "We listened to our fans, and that's what led us in this direction."
Pete Guelli, the Bobcats' chief marketing officer, said polling of the Charlotte market indicated about 80percent support for a name change to Hornets, and support for bringing back teal-and-purple ran nearly as high.
The move is a no-brainer after the name change was approved and was expected after the color scheme's heavy use in promotional media by the Bobcats during their announcements concerning the rebranding effort to the Hornets name.
The purple and teal will be accented by hints of black and light shades of gray and blue, in perhaps a more modern take on the complementary green and royal blue from the original Hornets jerseys.
The original color scheme was pushed for heavily by acclaimed designer Alexander Julian, who designed the first Hornets jerseys for George Shinn. As a quick aside, Julian is from Chapel Hill (shoutout to Julian's on Franklin Street) and in return for his design, was paid in 5 pound shipments of Carolina barbecue to be delivered for an indefinite period of time.
As for now, the Bobcats/Hornets have budgeted $4 million for the rebranding effort in the next 11 months, including resurfacing the game and practice courts, a mascot change (RIP Rufus), changing the name of the team's LLC (Bobcats Sports & Entertainment), arena signage, etc.
"We have an obligation to do this thing right," Guelli said. "When people walk into the arena in the fall of 2014, they need to know this is no longer a Bobcats experience. It's a Hornets experience."