Thursday, March 01, 2007

New Orleans VooDoo

Much is being made of how the Arena Football League launches a new era with it's ESPN/ABC contract when they open play this weekend. While I do agree that this is HUGE for AFL, I still don't understand what ESPN sees in this relationship.

As much as I like seeing minor league sports featured on ESPN (does anyone else miss late-night Australian Rules Football?), I have a very hard time believing that these games will draw much in the way of ratings despite how hardcore football fans can be. I see it as a cheapening of their major league prestige. Say what you will about ESPN, but you have to admit that they normally bring you the best of the best when it comes to sports. So when I see AFL highlights on Sportscenter and hear ESPN Radio hosts talking to AFL coaches, it makes me wonder why they felt that this deal was necessary. It's still a minor league, these are still NFL washouts no matter which station they are being shown on.

One good thing about the Arena League kicking off this week is the return of my favorite AFL logo, the New Orleans VooDoo. After sitting out last year in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, the VooDoo will open their home schedule on March 9th and become the first professional team to return full-time to the New Orleans Arena and they will do it in style.

I love bones and skulls and whatnot and I think that this logo does a good job of mixing the traditional voodoo imagery that is so prevalent in New Orleans with a bold, colorful, simplistic design that is needed in Arena Football.

My only beef is that they insist on using purple and red as the primary colors on t-shirts and jerseys rather than black with red and purple accents and that nearly all of the designs in their online store embellish the logo in dreadful ways. The skull and bones logo alone on a black t-shirt or polo (sadly out of stock) would be nearly perfect. There is no reason to trailer park/NASCAR it up the way that they do.

Team: New Orleans VooDoo
League: Arena Football League
Location: New Orleans, Louisiana
Arena: New Orleans Arena
Cheerleaders: The VooDoo Dolls
Mascots: Bones and Mojo
Online Store: Featuring Customizable jerseys!

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At 7:41 AM, Anonymous Mark True said...


I like the logo too...and when Iowa was at the center of the AFL world a few years back, I loved the AFL. It's a whole different game. If you go to a game, you'll be hooked.

Yes, it's minor league, but it's a great time that's full of action and hard hitting.

They're talking about bringing back AFL2 to Des Moines, and if we show up, they'll give us an AFL team. Des Moines had the reputation of being the Green Bay of the AFL because we were the smallest market and played in the championship game in our second and third years in the league.

The team was mismanaged and used an ancient arena before it was finally sold and moved to Long Island.

This season, I'll keep an eye on the Voodoo!


At 9:48 AM, Anonymous Mediocre Fred said...

"does anyone else miss late-night Australian Rules Football?"

I do! I'm a St Kilda fan. I used to be able to get broadcasts on Saturday night on MHz, before Comcast went digital and they took MHz away from me. Now I can't get my Aussie Rules fix.

At 11:15 AM, Anonymous hedgehog said...

small correction ... the AFL doesn't open play this weekend ... they opened last night with the Columbus Destroyers topping Nashville by 2

At 11:23 AM, Blogger Drew said...

Reminds me of the old Vancouver Voodoo Roller hockey logo. One of the biggest tragedies of my entire life was losing my two favorite t-shirts at once, a Vancouver Voodoo shirt and an old school Sonics shirt. Makes me mad just thinkin' about it.

At 11:35 PM, Blogger Brandon said...

Mark: Sorry, I don't mean to rip on the AFL, I have always been a big fan and am happy to see a minor league succeed like it is. But as much as I like it I have a hard time buying it as being important enough to take up time on ESPN, a network that has never followed second-tier sports leagues.

Fred: I have no idea where to find Aussie Rules football anymore on the TV anymore. Maybe it's on "The Ocho"

Hedgehog: I know, I know. I meant to note that. I meant that the majority of the league was starting that day.

Drew: That is a bummer. I hate losing or ruining my favorite shirts. I recently found a big oil stain on my Minnesota North Stars shirt recently. I had to donate it to the Goodwill...very sad.


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