WCCO EYE4 LOGO WCCO Radio wcco-eye-red01, ww color red

Local

Vikings Departure Could Lead To Large Fallout In Minnesota

View Comments
(credit: CBS) John Lauritsen
John Lauritsen is a reporter from Montevideo, Minn. He joined WCCO-...
Read More
Vikings Central
Buy Viking Tickets
Sun Sep.21
Away vs New Orleans Saints
findticketsbtn Vikings Departure Could Lead To Large Fallout In Minnesota
Sun Sep.28
Home vs Atlanta Falcons
findticketsbtn Vikings Departure Could Lead To Large Fallout In Minnesota
Thu Oct.2
Away vs Green Bay Packers
findticketsbtn Vikings Departure Could Lead To Large Fallout In Minnesota
Sun Oct.12
Home vs Detroit Lions
findticketsbtn Vikings Departure Could Lead To Large Fallout In Minnesota
 
Shop for Vikings Gear
NFL Scoreboard
NFL Standings
Team STATS
Team Schedule
Team Roster
Team Injuries

Sports Fan Insider

Keep up with your favorite teams and athletes with daily updates.
Sign Up
Today's Most Popular Video
  1. 4 Things To Know For Sept. 22, 2014
  2. Woman Launches New Local Bourbon Line, Crooked Water
  3. Bob Suter Leaves Behind Quite A Legacy
  4. Jason DeRusha Gladly Takes A Pie To The Kisser
  5. Alaska TV Reporter Quits On Air While Promoting Pot

ST. PAUL, Minn. (WCCO) — The last professional sports team to leave Minnesota was the North Stars.

They played their final game at Met Center in Bloomington in 1993 before moving to Dallas to become the Dallas Stars.

Seven years after the North Stars left, the Minnesota Wild began play at Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul. But getting professional hockey to return came at a steep price.

“It was extremely disappointing. After the game I can’t tell you how many people just stayed in their seat to watch, to reminisce, to think back about what great memories they had there,” said former North Stars player Tom Reid.

Reid is now a radio commentator for the Minnesota Wild. His restaurant in St. Paul is filled with North Star hockey history.

“When you lose something like that you don’t realize how important it is until it’s gone. And then you think- what did we do? You don’t realize the importance until you’ve lost it,” said Reid.

In the early 1990s, the team was hoping to sign a 20-year lease to play at the Met Center.

“When push came to shove there was a continued loss of dollars. There was no help financially at all to improve the building and so the North Stars left in 1993,” said Lou Nanne, a former North Stars player, coach and general manager.

The Met Center in Bloomington was torn down and now an Ikea parking lot sits where Mike Modano and Neal Broten used to play.

According to Nanne, it would have cost about $15 million to do what was needed to keep the North Stars in Minnesota. Seven years after they left, it cost $285 million to get a new hockey franchise.

That of course is the Minnesota Wild. Nanne said about 1,500 jobs were also lost and several local businesses suffered. Tom Reid remembers it well and hopes the Vikings don’t suffer a similar fate.

The NFL is a bigger league than the NHL is today and was back then. It’s arguably the most popular league, and things do cost more.

Nanne and Reid said the price tag for a new Vikings stadium is much higher than what it was for the North Stars. But Reid believes the fall out would also be much greater than what happened nearly 20 years ago.

“It isn’t just the team and players themselves. The trickle-down effect is enormous and you lose millions upon millions of dollars every year,” said Reid.

View Comments
blog comments powered by Disqus
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,868 other followers