The New Orleans Pelicans are in the midst of an arena lease agreement with the state until 2024 and have shown no desire to break the contract.
Despite losing seasons in four of the past five years, the Pelicans said they sold more than 11,000 season-ticket accounts for the 2016-17 season.
“You will never hear us say, ‘If we don’t get to 10,000 season tickets, the team is moving,’ ” Pelicans team president Dennis Lauscha said. “You’ll never hear that from us.”
Tom Benson has owned the New Orleans Saints since 1985 and bought the Pelicans in 2012 from the NBA. There is a perception that Benson favors the Saints and part of that thought stems from the fact that Mickey Loomis is involved in basketball operations.
“Mickey has an extremely important role in our building, being that we own an NBA and NFL team; it is very unique,” Pelicans senior vice president of communications Greg Bensel said. “He is our primary football executive. All decisions made on the football side day to day run through him. He leaves the day-to-day operations of the basketball team to Dell; however, Mickey ensures that both teams have all the resources they need to be successful. He is the conduit to Mr. Benson to make that happen on both teams, someone that Mr. Benson trusts implicitly to make those decisions.”