It's an instance in which we take no pleasure in saying "We told you so." And trust me, we usually take a great amount of pleasure from such a thing.
After all the wishing, dreaming, Facebook page-starting, and begging of Steve Ballmer to pony up a few billion dollars to buy the troubled franchise, in the end, the Hornets did exactly what they had been trying to do all along: bring in fans to see them play.
Specifically, the team had to keep its average home attendance during the month of January at 14,213 or more, a feat accomplished on Monday, meaning the Hornets are guaranteed to play at least one more season in New Orleans.
As the AP reports, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal celebrated the team's fulfilling its contract's attendance clause at a press conference.
"Today's a great step forward, but we're not done yet," Jindal said in a news conference at the New Orleans Arena on Monday, shortly before the Hornets hosted the Oklahoma City Thunder. "We cannot become complacent . . . We've got to continue to be vigilant in supporting the Hornets and keeping them here."
Ironically, the Hornets owe at least part of their most recent attendance spike to the failure of the Big Easy's truest love, the Saints, which of course came at the hands of the Seahawks and was emphasized by Marshawn Lynch's now-mythic Beastquake Run.
With the Saints no longer playing football, the AP reports that the Hornets have seen more fans showing up to watch Chris Paul and the rest of the squad play basketball instead.
The spike in attendance coincided with the NFL's Saints being knocked out of the playoffs and the Hornets going on an eight-game winning streak that has put them firmly in playoff contention.
The development may assure that the Hornets stay in New Orleans for the time being, but it doesn't change the fact that the team is struggling to be a viable business. So it's likely that come next season (depending on what happens with the NBA player lockout), these questions will again be raised.
And as long as Steve Ballmer remains sufficiently rich and Seattle sports fans remain sufficiently rabid, we may get another shot at them.