New Orleans VooDoo

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New Orleans VooDoo
New Orleans VooDoo
Conference National
Division Southern
Year founded 2004
Home arena New Orleans Arena
City, State New Orleans, Louisiana
Wild card titles none
Division titles 1:
Conference titles none
ArenaBowl championships none

The New Orleans VooDoo is a team in the Arena Football League, and is owned in part by Tom Benson, who also owns the National Football League New Orleans Saints. The VooDoo competes in the Southern Division of the National Conference, playing their home games at the New Orleans Arena, which they share with the National Basketball Association New Orleans Hornets. The Arena is located directly across from the Saints' home, the Louisiana Superdome.

An AFL expansion team, the VooDoo played its inaugural game at home against the Indiana Firebirds on February 12, 2004. The team logo, consisting of a skull wearing a top hat and sunglasses, is unique—even by Arena Football standards.

In their first year, they drew big crowds to their "Graveyard", as they became the first team other than the Orlando Predators or Tampa Bay Storm to win the AFL's Southern Division. The team's average attendance of 15,240 ranked fifth in the league and was a major factor in the VooDoo's 7-1 regular season home record.

In 2005, the team started strong, getting a win over the defending Arenabowl champions San Jose Sabercats, but later found itself on the wrong end of some close, hard-fought games. After 5-1 and 6-2 starts, respectively, the bottom dropped out as the team became wildly inconsistent. Last-minute losses to the Georgia Force and Austin Wranglers dropped the Voodoo's record to 6-4, but were made up by a 64-28 blowout over the Columbus Destroyers and a 49-40 road win at the Grand Rapids Rampage, whom along with the Destroyers had only one win before facing the Voodoo. However this led to the climax of the season, with the Voodoo still having road games against rivals Orlando and Tampa Bay and a home date with Colorado. The offense sputtered against Tampa, bowing out 46-35. The defense that showed up, however, must have been left in Tampa, as Colorado made scoring look easy and put a wrench in the Voodoo's playoff hopes, 63-57. Next, long-since-eliminated Austin travelled to the New Orleans Arena the next week and almost nailed the coffin shut on the Voodoo's season by taking a 14-point lead thanks to another non-existent Voodoo defensive effort. However, a fourth quarter comeback ended Austin's season and extended the Voodoo's one more (meaningful) week with a 69-68 win.

With a national television audience and sold-out T.D. Waterhouse Centre looking on, the Voodoo ended their second regular season against Orlando with both needing a win to reach the playoffs. After the first series of the game, it looked to be the Voodoo's to lose. However, the rest of the first half was a lost cause, with Orlando taking a 28-7 lead into the locker room. A second half rally featuring a fumble return for a touchdown by Thabiti Davis brought the deficit to a single score, but the Voodoo's backs were broken when a Jay Taylor kickoff hit the iron surrounding the nets and was recovered by the Predators, which, after another touchdown to bring the lead up to 15, effectively sealed the game and ensured the Voodoo would watch the playoffs from home. The final score was 51-40, ending the Voodoo's season at 9-7, a dissapointing result for a team widely expected to challenge for the ArenaBowl championship.

Despite the underacheivement, the Voodoo proved to be hits with New Orleans for the second consecutive year, with an average attendance of 15,338, good for third in the 17-team AFL, and again had the New Orleans market lead the nation in television ratings for Sunday AFL broadcasts on NBC.

The Voodoo's success and popularity has led the AFL to consider placing the ArenaBowl in New Orleans. Although it had already signed a deal with Las Vegas to have the ArenaBowl in that city for 2005, 2006 and 2007, the league is considering terminating that deal. If the bidding for ArenaBowl XX is allowed to begin, New Orleans would be an early favorite, along with Orlando and Arizona. To read a New Orleans Times-Picayune article on this issue, click here.

On September 28, 2005, it was announced due to the extensive damage suffered by Hurricane Katrina to the New Orleans Arena, the VooDoo would suspend operations for the 2006 season. Fifteen of the players under contract with the VooDoo were "loaned" to an expansion Kansas City franchise for the 2006 season.


Head coaches

Notable Players

Playoff history

External links



Columbus Destroyers
Dallas Desperados
New York Dragons
Philadelphia Soul


Austin Wranglers
Georgia Force
Kansas City
New Orleans VooDoo*
Orlando Predators
Tampa Bay Storm


Chicago Rush
Colorado Crush
Grand Rapids Rampage
Nashville Kats


Arizona Rattlers
Las Vegas Gladiators
Los Angeles Avengers
San Jose SaberCats
Utah Blaze

*inactive for 2006 season
Related Articles: af2 | Arena football | Indoor football
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