NBA news has slowed to a trickle as teams leave Vegas and head back to their respective cities. The Hornets have a busy week ahead of them, though. The coaching staff will be getting to know each other and planning for next year. Until now, they have only spent about 72 hours in New Orleans together. Of course, Hugh Weber has announced that he will choose the next GM by the end of this week. And sometime soon, Monty Williams will have a summit with a purportedly disgruntled Chris Paul, according to CBSSports.com:
Williams plans to sit down with Paul for a face-to-face meeting in the near future in an effort to clear the air about the point guard's concerns and sell him on his vision.
"I want him to feel as excited as I am about where we're going," Williams said after watching the Hornets' Summer League team Friday. "We have a bit of a new vision that I think is something that he can be excited about - and not just from an on-the-court standpoint. We're working to get this thing continuing in the right direction."
There's no date set for this, and Monty wants to work around Paul's summer schedule. So there might not be any news about this meeting for some time.
Returning briefly to At the Hive's ongoing hydrocarbon analysis, a couple of new items might have an impact on the impending ownership shift. The cap placed on the Deepwater Horizon well might not be stopping the oil flow:
Late Sunday, the government ordered BP to step up monitoring of the well after "undetermined anomalies" were discovered on the seafloor nearby.
In a letter to the company, Thad W. Allen, the retired Coast Guard admiral who commands the response to the oil spill, also noted that tests had detected a seep - usually a flow of hydrocarbons from the seafloor - "a distance from the well."
And while the letter said the federal government would allow the test to continue for now, the discovery of a seep and the unspecified anomalies suggest that the well could be damaged and that it may have to be reopened soon to avoid making the situation worse.
That's really bad news, for a lot of reasons. The least important reason is that the longer this disaster continues, the longer Gary Chouest's cash flow problem continues, and the longer the ownership transfer will likely be postponed.
The deepwater drilling ban is what is really killing Edison Chouest, and the LA Times reports that the Obama Administration has instated a new drilling moratorium that might not get overturned by federal courts:
The reason the wells have the potential for catastrophes like BP's Deepwater Horizon spill appears to be that the technology for preventing major blowouts at those depths is less than fully reliable. But the judge in the case found the administration's reasoning overly broad - why had it specified 500 feet or more? why not 450 or 600? - and a higher court refused to reinstate the ban.
The rigs currently drilling in depths greater than 500 feet use the same subsurface blowout preventer that has been implicated as a probable contributor to the BP spill. The courts should have acknowledged that logic to begin with, and the Obama administration made the right decision not to back down, instead instituting a new moratorium this week that tightens the argument. This time, the ban isn't based on the depth of the water at the drilling site but on the kinds of blowout preventers the rigs use. It covers the same 33 rigs.
So Edison Chouest isn't out of the woods, and the sale of the Hornets is still up in the air. Nothing has changed.