NOLA is home to two pro sports teams- the Saints and the Pelicans.
The Saints won Super Bowl XLIV after the 2009 season. The Pelicans are the original Charlotte Hornets-even though their name and history was returned to the expansion Charlotte franchise. I had to explain all of this to my brother-in-law during the Pels' closeout win over Portland last month.
Anthony Davis scored 47 points in that Game 4 win over Portland, leading the Pels to the second round for the second time in their history. The "Brow" base cards are the only Pelicans in my star player box. I don't have any DeMarcus Cousins or Chris Paul base cards yet..
..but I do have this dual relic with CP3 and David West. Both this and the Artist Proof parallel were part of the COMC 500; the relic card actually cost less ($1.15) than the Davis ($1.23)
There's another David West card that has caught my eye more than a couple times:
It's tempting to spend $3.25 on this card, but the tiny crease above the 'C' scares me off.
Earlier this month I bought a 75-card repack of basketball cards and pulled this Baron Davis Topps Prisitne single. It was a nice surprise and easily my favorite card in the pack.
14 of the 26 NOLA-based basketball cards in my base binders are of these four players -
Sixth Man of the Year Eric Gordon and Jrue Holiday..
...Ryan Anderson and Tyreke Evans. Anderson, Gordon, and Chris Paul were teammates with the Rockets this season.
None of my New Orleans cards are from the first five years of the Jazz franchise (both my Pete Maravich cards are Atlanta Hawks inserts.)
New Orleans was all but destroyed when Hurricane Katrina ripped through the Gulf of Mexico in 2005. The Louisiana Superdome was used as a shelter for displaced residents:
Saints owner Tom Benson used the damaged Dome as leverage to get a new stadium built, threatening to move the Saints to San Antonio in the wake of Katrina. Instead, the recently deceased billionaire got a more favorable lease - and the Superdome was renovated (and renamed.)
The Saints returned to the Superdome for the 2006 season, with a new anthem and a new leader.
Drew Brees led New Orleans to the NFC title game in his first season with the team; three years later he was MVP of the Saints' Super Bowl win over Indy. Barring injury, he will become the all-time leader in passing yardage during the 2018 season. The Playoff Ticket parallel is my only Brees 'hit' unless you count this:
Multi-player cards clash with my OCD; I have a separate section in my binder for them - even if all of the players depicted are on the same team.
The Saints went all-in on Ricky Williams, trading their entire draft for him in 1999. The gamble paid off. After 33 NFL seasons the franchise finally earned a playoff win in Ricky's second year. The enigmatic running back was traded to Miami after just three seasons with the Saints.
After Williams left and before Brees arrived the Saints did not make the playoffs - though they were an extra point away in 2003.
You'll have to click 'watch on YouTube' but it's worth it for the announcer's reaction alone.
Two longtime Saints greats can be found in the Pro Football Hall of Fame - and my star player box.
This is my only Rickey Jackson card. He was part of a killer linebacking crew along with Sam Mills and Pat Swilling. I remember ESPN's NFL Prime Time did a story on the trio; they did a cheesy rap song intro which I won't bother looking for.
A kicker in Canton? Yesss! Morten Andersen won a lot of games for the Saints when I was a kid, and kept on kicking until age 47. He's likely the only special teams player in my stars/Hofers box; I don't have any George Blanda, Jan Stenerud, or Ray Guy cards.
Remember the Flat Rate box of cards I bought on eBay? Of the 130 football cards therein, 75 of them were Saints.
74 of them were Marques Colston (a single Reggie Bush card must have slipped in by mistake.)
If I had 75 Jim Everett cards my wife would be happy. Alas, I only have six from his Saints seasons.
Archie Manning never played in a playoff game and only had one non-losing season as Saints' signal-caller. His sons were pretty good, though.
The rest of my Saints hits (no bounty payments needed.) The Chrome Delhomme is a rookie card, though it's not labeled as such.
Favorite Saints player: Drew Brees
Favorite Pelicans player: Anthony Davis
Next tour stop: New York City
Thanks for reading!