Get to know Atlanta’s newest pro sports franchise

There’s a new pro sports team in Atlanta, and your first chance to see them will be this weekend.

The Georgia Swarm’s first season in the A-T-L is underway after relocating from Minnesota. A franchise in the National Lacrosse League, the Swarm is one of nine teams that make up the league, and they’re by far the southernmost. Four of the nine teams play in Canada, and three others play in either New York or New England.

The Swarm will play its home games at Infinite Energy Arena, formerly known as the Arena at Gwinnett Center, in Duluth.

“Atlanta is unbelievable in terms of what it has done over the last couple of decades in terms of growth. The population down there and demographics are phenomenal,” NLL Commissioner Nick Sakiewicz told the Atlanta Business Chronicle. “I’ve seen how the launch of the new MLS team [Atlanta United FC, starting play in 2017] has been spectacular and very well received. I think lacrosse can have the same kind of effect.”

(Also read: The worst thing about Arthur Blank’s Friday statement)

The Swarm’s inaugural home opener will be Saturday night at 7:05 p.m. against the Toronto Rock, and the game will be televised on Fox Sports Southeast.

Prior to the move south, the Swarm had modest success in St. Paul, Minnesota. In 11 seasons, the Minnesota Swarm made the playoffs seven times. They never finished higher than second place in their NLL division.

Going into Saturday night’s game, the Swarm have an 0-1 record after a 16-15 loss to the Colorado Mammoth on New Year’s Day.

The NLL’s regular season is 18 games long, and will last through the end of April. Six of the nine teams in the NLL will make the playoffs.

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