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It’s official, the New Orleans Pelicans now play in ‘Smoothie King Center’

Kelly Dwyer
Ball Don't Lie

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(Courtesy New Orleans Pelicans)

The city of New Orleans isn’t exactly associated with healthy lifestyle options.

The city’s most famous avenue is named after a particular strain of libation. The city’s most renowned confection is deep fried and covered in sugar, and up until recently the New Orleans Pelicans’ arena was partially sponsored by a delicious red beans and rice brand that features about as much sodium per serving as a double helping of supersized French fries. One doesn’t go to New Orleans to turn the ship around.

The Pelicans are trying to turn that around. They’re also getting paid to help turn things around, but at least the franchise can pay lip service to a healthier nod. They’re letting the former New Orleans Arena be named “Smoothie King Center,” after Smoothie King, a chain of fruit-blendin’ smoothie chains.

From the team’s press release:

The naming rights agreement between the Pelicans, the State of Louisiana and Smoothie King is for 10 years. A new Smoothie King Center logo will adorn the roof of the building and the new Smoothie King Center name and logo will appear on the facility’s exterior façade, on the Pelicans home basketball court, the team’s scoreboard and in numerous locations throughout the facility.

The Smoothie King Center will also feature visuals that reinforce the brand’s new purpose-driven positioning. Fans will see messages encouraging them to “Feel Taller” and “Get More Jump in Your Game” with Smoothie King’s Energy and Fitness Blends.

With the NBA hosting its annual All-Star Game and associated activities in New Orleans the weekend of February 14-16, fans attending the newly-named Smoothie King Center will be greeted by a 20-foot high Smoothie King cup at the building’s main entrance on Gravier Street across from the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. A new Smoothie King retail outlet will offer visitors numerous varieties of its signature purposeful smoothies to enjoy for sporting events and other entertainment offerings held at the Smoothie King Center.

I guess it’s better than naming it, “Thirty Six Ounce Kamikaze in a Neon Yellow Cup with a Giant Light Blue Straw Center,” I suppose. Just barely.

From Smoothie King’s website, here are some pictures of what Pelicans fans can expect when they go to a home game:

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(Courtesy SmoothieKing.com)

This is a 20-foot smoothie:

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(Courtesy SmoothieKing.com)

This is the bottom of the scoreboard:

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(Courtesy SmoothieKing.com)

The New Orleans Pelicans are currently 21-27, seven games out of the final spot in the Western Conference playoff bracket.

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Kelly Dwyer is an editor for Ball Don't Lie on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at KDonhoops@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!

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