FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 12, 2014
Mike Cristaldi, Charlotte Hornets
The Charlotte Sports Foundation (CSF) and the Charlotte Hornets announced this morning in a press conference that the team will officially submit a bid for Charlotte to host the NBA All-Star Weekend at Time Warner Cable Arena in 2017 or 2018. The bid is the result of a partnership between the city of Charlotte, local community and business leaders, and the Hornets.
A contingent of representatives including Fred Whitfield, Hornets Sports & Entertainment President & COO; Will Webb, CSF Executive Director; Johnny Harris, CSF Board Chairman and President of Lincoln Harris; Dell Curry, Charlotte Hornets legend and All-Star participant; and Hornets mascot Hugo will fly to New York this afternoon to personally deliver the All-Star Game bid to NBA Deputy Commissioner Mark Tatum and other league executives.
“On behalf of everyone involved, we are very excited to announce that we will submit an official bid this afternoon for Charlotte to host NBA All-Star Weekend,” said Webb.“The overwhelming support for the Hornets during their playoff run and rebranding has proven the passion Charlotte has for the NBA. And the worldwide fan base of the NBA makes this a perfect opportunity to showcase Charlotte and Time Warner Cable Arena on a global stage.”
“It is our honor to submit our bid for the city of Charlotte to host a future All-Star Weekend,” said Whitfield. “The Charlotte Sports Foundation and other community and business leaders have urged us to undertake this effort and have pledged their full support. We are grateful for their backing and look forward to once again having the chance to bring international acclaim to the city of Charlotte. With the return of the Hornets name and our team on the rise, we feel like this is the perfect time for Charlotte to host an All-Star Game and we are confident in our chances for success.”
“We are very confident in the strength of our bid to host NBA All-Star Weekend,” said Harris. “Charlotte has proven to be a thriving center of economic growth and development. It is a tremendous destination for both domestic and international sports fans. The board of CSF is dedicated to impacting the Charlotte community, both economically and socially. Hosting the NBA All-Star Game will not only have Charlotte buzzing with excitement, but will have a huge economic impact on the tourism industry.”
Charlotte is a leading city in the sports industry. In addition to the Charlotte Hornets and NFL Carolina Panthers, Charlotte is home to ESPNU, ESPN Regional, Raycom Sports, the SEC Network, the NASCAR Hall of Fame, the Sports Business Daily/Journal, Street & Smith’s/Sporting News, and FOX Sports1 production, as well as the AAA baseball Charlotte Knights, AHL Charlotte Checkers and Major League Lacrosse’s Charlotte Hounds.
The city has also hosts a number of major sporting events annually, including the Belk Bowl, the ACC Football Championship, the CIAA Tournament, the PGA Tour’s Wells Fargo Championship and NASCAR’s All-Star Race, Coca-Cola 600 and Bank of America 500.
The coming years will mark the returns of NCAA men’s basketball tournament games in 2015 and the ACC Tournament in 2019, as well as Charlotte’s first time hosting the PGA Championship in 2017.
Charlotte hosted the NBA All-Star Game in 1991, with the East defeating the West 116-114 before a sold-out crowd of 23,530 at the Charlotte Coliseum. The Hornets sold out 364 consecutive NBA games from December 1988 to November 1997 and led the league in attendance in eight of their first nine seasons.
The Charlotte Sports Foundation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization created in 2013 to provide leadership for sports-based initiatives that enhance the economy and quality of life in the Charlotte region. CSF provides unique events and business opportunities around professional, collegiate and amateur sporting events, highlighted by the Belk Bowl and the Dr Pepper ACC Football Championship. These efforts are intended to create a positive economic impact in the region as well as to enhance the quality of life.Hornets Sports & Entertainment owns the Charlotte Hornets and operates Charlotte’s Time Warner Cable Arena.