The New Orleans Saints’ preseason finale against the Arizona Cardinals on Saturday has been canceled “due to the impending impact of Hurricane Ida on the Gulf Coast region,” the team said in a statement on Friday. The Saints will travel to Dallas on Saturday to get ahead of the storm and will remain there through Wednesday, holding practices at AT&T Stadium, a source told The Athletic.

“Due to the intensification of the hurricane throughout the day and after the most recent tropical update, the team’s leadership has made the decision in the best interests of all personnel that may have been directly and indirectly affected by the storm,” the statement from the Saints said.

Earlier Friday, kickoff for the game at Caesars Superdome was moved up seven hours to avoid any complications from the hurricane potentially headed toward New Orleans. The Saints said the eventual cancellation “comes after constant communications with City of New Orleans officials, the National Weather Service, Homeland Security, Governor Edwards and leading state officials and the National Football League.”

Ida, which strengthened into a Category 1 hurricane on Friday, is supposed to hit southern Louisiana on Sunday night, with New Orleans already in a hurricane watch. There is a possibility it could turn into a Category 3 hurricane by the time it makes landfall.

The city has fallen victim to hurricanes in the past. Hurricane Katrina, a Category 5, wreaked havoc in New Orleans and the surrounding areas in August 2005, causing more than 1,800 deaths and $125 billion in damage. Last year, Hurricane Zeta hit New Orleans in October and team coaches and officials stayed at the Saints’ facility.

(Photo: Chris Graythen / Getty Images)

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