For the first time since the Hornets made their full-time return to New Orleans in 2007, the team will hold training camp away from its practice facility, the Alario Center. Following Media Day at the New Orleans Arena on Monday, Sept. 28, the Hornets will officially commence on-court preparations for the 2009-10 season on Sept. 29 in Lafayette, located about 130 miles west of the Crescent City.
As a result of the off-site location of camp this year, players will be staying overnight in Lafayette for several days. The week should allow the team to spend more time together off the court than in prior seasons, when players returned to their homes in the New Orleans metro area after each day of practice. The Hornets week in Lafayette culminates with a practice that will be open to the public on Saturday, Oct. 3.
New Orleans is scheduled to play eight preseason games, starting with an Oct. 7 trip to Atlanta to visit the Hawks. The next evening, the Hornets face the Charlotte Bobcats in Greensboro, N.C. The first home preseason game is at 1 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 10, against Oklahoma City. There are excellent seat locations available for the exhibition contest vs. the Thunder.