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New Orleans Hosts First Major Sports Event Since Katrina


New Orleans is set to host its first major professional sporting event since Hurricane Katrina struck last August.

The National Basketball Association's New Orleans Hornets return to their home city to play the Los Angeles Lakers. The team will play only two more games in the devastated city this season and only six next season. The Hornets have established a temporary home in Oklahoma City.

Wednesday night's game against the Lakers will be played in the New Orleans Arena in front of a capacity crowd of about 17,000, including NBA Commissioner David Stern. The arena was used as a shelter for evacuees during the hurricane and it suffered some flood damage.

The Hornets average attendance this season is nearly 4,000 more than last season, but the team's owner says he still plans to return the team to New Orleans for the 2007-2008 season.

Some information for this report was provided by AP.
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