September 14, 2010

Voodoo Resurrected

The reborn Arena Football League will see the New Orleans Voodoo reincarnated in March 2011.

The ownership of the AFL's Bossier-Shreveport BattleWings in the northwestern corner of Louisiana will reportedly move their operations to New Orleans.

The BattleWings will assume the name and look of Tom Benson's Voodoo, which was shut down in 2008 after playing four seasons in 2004, 2005, 2007 and 2008.  The original Voodoo were run by members of Benson's Saints staff, including his granddaughter Rita Benson LeBlanc. 

The BattleWings are owned by businessman Dan Newman, a Shreveport, LA native and a former color analyst for Louisiana Tech football broadcasts.

The team has already secured a lease to play its home games in the New Orleans Arena.  Unlike the original Voodoo, the team's staff and training facility will share space at the Saints' Headquarters in Metairie.

The BattleWings, playing its games in the CenturyTel Center in Bossier City, LA, finished with a 3-13 record, tied for last in the league.

The AFL as a sports entity itself was reborn when a number of its teams died and it merged with the smaller-market AFL2.  The old Arena Football League declared bankruptcy in 2009 after the season was canceled, but the new league played in 15 cities in 2010.

The new Voodoo have not announced their coaching staff but have expressed interest in bringing back former Voodoo players.  John Norris, a former AFL player, will be the new team's general manager.

Newman named Danny Wimprine, a New Orleans native, former University of Memphis, AFL, Voodoo and CFL quarterback, as the team's starting quarterback in 2011.  Wimprine was the quarterback of the 2008 New Orleans Voodoo team.

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