WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — The city that once took Charlotte’s NBA franchise will now take over the league’s All-Star festivities from the Queen City.
The NBA announced today February’s All-Star Game will be played in New Orleans. The league announced last month it would move the game from Charlotte over objects to a North Carolina law limiting anti-discrimination protections for lesbian, gay and transgender people. Gov. Pat McCrory called the move “total PC BS.”
Critics of the NBA’s decision say choosing New Orleans does not make sense.
“It is ironic that the NBA would choose to relocate their All-Star game from Charlotte to the State of Louisiana since in June the state joined North Carolina and 22 other states to stop President Obama’s transgender bathroom directive granting boys access into girls’ bathrooms, locker rooms and shower facilities in schools and universities,” NC Values Coalition Executive Director Tammy Fitzgerald said in a statement.
Supporters of the change in venue say it sends a clear message to North Carolina leaders.
“Gov. Pat McCrory and state lawmakers should use this as an opportunity to halt their assault on the people, reputation, and economy of North Carolina, and work toward replacing HB2 with commonsense non-discrimination protections,” Human Rights Campaign President Chad Griffin said in a statement. “We look forward to the day when all North Carolinians can live their lives free from discrimination, and Charlotte is able to welcome back the All-Star Game.”
New Orleans hosted the NBA All-Star Weekend in 2014. The city’s team, now known as the Pelicans, was originally the Charlotte Hornets, which started play in 1988. The team moved to New Orleans in 2002. The league expanded back to Charlotte in 2004 with the Bobcats, who resumed the Hornets name for the 2014-2015 season after New Orleans decided to adopt the more regionally relevant Pelicans a year earlier.