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Postby mikus » Mon Feb 06, 2006 12:12 am

http://sports.espn.go.com/nfl/news/story?id=2320490

This is great news!!! Next year starts tomorrow!



Saints to return to Superdome, host Falcons Sept. 24
ESPN.com news services

The Saints will return to action in New Orleans much earlier than originally hoped or expected.

The Saints will host their first game at the Louisiana Superdome, severely damaged in Hurricane Katrina, on Sept. 24 when they host the Atlanta Falcons, the NFL announced Sunday.

"Superdome officials are pointing to the Falcons-Saints game on Sept. 24 as the first event in the building since Hurricane Katrina," commissioner Paul Tagliabue said. "We are pleased that this historic reopening will feature the annual renewal of the traditional Falcons-Saints rivalry."

A 40-foot by 150-foot mural with the news of the Saints' 2006 home opener was completed on the outside of the Superdome just hours before kickoff of Super Bowl XL in Detroit.

The mural contains the date of the Saints' first regular-season home game in the Superdome since 2004, Saints and Falcons helmet logos, and a "Go Saints" slogan. It took four workers nearly five days to complete the project, amid high winds and winter weather in Detroit this week.

The Superdome was used as a shelter for between 25,000 and 30,000 people following Katrina. Repair costs are estimated at about $140 million and most of that is expected to be covered by the state's insurance and by FEMA.

The Superdome's structural frame was not affected by the hurricane. The building lost 70 percent of its roof, however, which resulted in major damage as rain poured into the building.

All of the carpet -- about 53,000 square yards -- must be replaced, as well as 30 percent of the drywall and 15 percent of the ceiling tiles.

Much of the upholstered furniture was damaged by water and mold, including all of the furnishings in the box suites. About 35 percent of the seats in the arena had water damage.

The football turf also was damaged by contaminated water and will be replaced.

Eleven of the Superdome's 38 escalators and six of the 15 elevators will be replaced. The four main scoreboards must be replaced. And the building's telephone system flooded and must be replaced.

The original timetable for repairing the Superdome set Nov. 1 as the date the facility would be ready for hosting major football events.

The Saints' first two regular-season games will be played on the road, with the locations and dates of those games, as well as the rest of the Saints' and Falcons' 2006 schedules, to be announced by early April.

The Saints also plan to play two of their four 2006 preseason games in the Gulf Coast region.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.
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Postby Mercer Boy » Mon Feb 06, 2006 12:43 am

Yeah, saw this on the ESPNEWS ticker. That's great that they can return to games next year. I hope the city recovers well and can root on their favorite team in their true home again! ;-D
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Postby Slingblade » Mon Feb 06, 2006 1:04 am

They should of moved. Stupid New Orleans and their rebuilding. That city is gonna be trashed again later this year.
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Postby UNDEFEATED » Mon Feb 06, 2006 8:38 am

Hornets seem to be moving along well.
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Postby Homeless » Mon Feb 06, 2006 9:06 am

I think the city needed this,would have been hard to swallow if they lost their pro team after all theyve been through.

Now they just need a new Mayor and theyre set ;-D
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Postby louisianacajunsam » Mon Feb 06, 2006 10:47 am

you dont know anything about new orleans football..hornets have nothing to do with the saints..new orleans is a football city and louisiana is most definately a football state..no one cared about the hornets even before the hurricane but even through all the miserable years of losing for the saints, the n.o. fans still supported, even if it was with a bag on their heads..they were at the games..

we dont even care if we lose anymore..we're used to it..but theres still faith, and thats why are fans are still glued to the t.v. every sunday, even if that may involve tears..and thats why our state has such good fans..we won't quit..

the state needs the superdome and the saints..its important for our economy..yea yea i know..costs some money to get it running again..but you have to put money in to create money..

heres one article from a fan way before the hurricane about the effect on the economy involving the blanco-benson disputes..

http://www.theind.com/letters2.asp?CID=-1026089807
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Postby HskrPwr13 » Mon Feb 06, 2006 10:55 am

Apparantly my white money isnt needed there so I could care less what goes on in NO. I'd care more about the Saints if they played somewhere else. (Of course if the people impeach Nagin, my attitude will change.)
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Postby The Great Gambini » Mon Feb 06, 2006 10:55 am

Slingblade wrote:They should of moved. Stupid New Orleans and their rebuilding. That city is gonna be trashed again later this year.


Tad insensitive, don't you think?
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Postby Slingblade » Mon Feb 06, 2006 10:59 am

The Great Gambini wrote:
Slingblade wrote:They should of moved. Stupid New Orleans and their rebuilding. That city is gonna be trashed again later this year.


Tad insensitive, don't you think?


Just my opinion. Stupid place to put a city, let alone rebuild one becuase of flooding.
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Postby jayday » Mon Feb 06, 2006 12:55 pm

HskrPwr13 wrote:Apparantly my white money isnt needed there so I could care less what goes on in NO. I'd care more about the Saints if they played somewhere else. (Of course if the people impeach Nagin, my attitude will change.)

Yea, that comment of his really irked me...
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