New Orleans makes NBA playoffs, fans still confused how Saints did it

Don Kiebels

The New Orleans Pelicans are headed back to the playoffs after clinching one of the Western Conference’s eight seeds in a 113-100 win over the Clippers in Los Angeles.

As the surprising franchise charges into the post-season, a sense of optimism has permeated the Crescent City.

“I didn’t even know the Saints played basketball,” said John Morgan, a lifelong fan of the Black and Gold who clearly didn’t know New Orleans has a professional basketball team.

“Here I am looking forward to the NFL draft coming up in a few weeks and then out of nowhere, bam, we make the playoffs. That’s simply incredible.”

Christian Kelly, another local who was stunned to hear that New Orleans had made the NBA playoffs, knew this year would be special.

“After the heart-breaking way last season ended, I knew we were on the cusp of something great and that we’d be back in the playoffs again — I just didn’t think it’d happen this quickly. I mean, April? That’s Hall of Fame, ambush type stuff right there,” Kelly said.

Seth Dunlap, co-host of WWL’s Double Coverage radio show, said the city needs to better familiarize itself with and support the team as it heads into the long-awaited playoffs.

“Kristian and I talk about the Pelicans just about every night on our radio show, and you’d be surprised by how many listeners call in asking why we’re talking about ‘nature and sh*t,’ and not sports — the Saints.”

The New Orleans Pelicans, formerly the New Orleans Hornets, have been trying to convince the city they play there since 2002.