Mythbusters: New stadiums cure everything

  • Updated: July 26, 2013 - 6:13 AM

Rendering of the new Vikings stadium, scheduled to open in 2016, but it won’t necessarily mean more victories.

Photo: Image courtesy of Minnesota Vikings,

CameraStar Tribune photo galleries

Cameraview larger

Sports fans tend to cling to long-held beliefs about their teams, for better or worse. This week, we are exploring five of them to determine whether fact or fiction rules the day. Today: Stadiums cure everything.

With the Vikings’ new stadium slated to open in 2016, local sports fans will soon enjoy a plethora of great gameday experiences.

The as-yet unnamed stadium will join Target Field as posh downtown bookends. St. Paul started the renaissance with the Xcel Energy Center and in between sits TCF Bank Stadium.

And don’t forget an unprecedented facilities development plan by the Gophers athletic department. Added together, the price for these pro and college venues exceeds $2 billion.

So where is the on-field return in investment? The Twins and Wild have combined for two division titles, five playoff appearances (four by the Wild) and five home playoff victories (all by the Wild). The Gophers football program has gone a combined 18-32 in the four seasons since TCF Bank opened.

The reality is, while new stadiums are built to be symbolic of a new era for the home team and its fans, success takes more than cash, cranes and concrete. New stadiums can provide immediate and lasting benefits to a program or community, but winning remains a fickle pursuit.

The Twins won the American League Central in 2010 but are flirting with 100 losses for the third consecutive year. The first-year marks for average attendance (39,798) and home victories (53) have not been matched since.

The Wild and Gophers also took turnstile hits recently. The Wild’s home sellout streak ended early in the 2010-11 season — the third of four consecutive playoff-less years. And after buying up 10,000 season tickets in 2009, U of M students purchased fewer than 6,000 two seasons later.

The sugar rush-like allure of a new stadium will reach new heights in 2016 when the Vikings unveil their new home. But fans are less likely than ever to return in droves for a product that doesn’t match the packaging.

David La Vaque

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions


Philadelphia - WP: A. Harang 5 FINAL
Washington - LP: J. Zimmermann 3
Atlanta - LP: S. Marimon 5 FINAL
Toronto - WP: B. Cecil 6
Chicago WSox - WP: C. Sale 12 FINAL
Detroit - LP: A. Sanchez 3
Cleveland - WP: D. Salazar 4 FINAL
Minnesota - LP: P. Hughes 2
Cincinnati - LP: H. Bailey 2 FINAL
St. Louis - WP: C. Martinez 5
San Diego - LP: C. Kimbrel 6 FINAL
Chicago Cubs - WP: Z. Rosscup 7
Baltimore - WP: C. Tillman 4 FINAL
Boston - LP: C. Buchholz 1
Milwaukee 1 Top 6th Inning
Pittsburgh 6
Miami 0 Bottom 5th Inning
NY Mets 2
LA Angels 0 Bottom 5th Inning
Houston 0
NY Yankees 2 Bottom 6th Inning
Tampa Bay 0
Oakland 5 Top 6th Inning
Kansas City 0
Arizona - R. De La Rosa 8:05 PM
San Francisco - C. Heston
Colorado - J. Lyles 8:10 PM
Los Angeles - Z. Greinke
Texas - C. Lewis 8:10 PM
Seattle - F. Hernandez
Washington 93 FINAL
Toronto 86
New Orleans 99 FINAL
Golden State 106
Milwaukee 59 3rd Qtr 7:30
Chicago 66
Dallas 8:30 PM
Minnesota 1 FINAL
St. Louis 4
Detroit 1 FINAL
Tampa Bay 5
Pittsburgh 0 1st Prd 12:39
NY Rangers 0
Winnipeg 9:30 PM
Houston 1 2nd Half 20:00
D.C. 1
Orlando City 0 2nd Half
Columbus 1
Toronto FC 7:30 PM
FC Dallas
Seattle 8:00 PM
Vancouver FC 8:30 PM
Real Salt Lake
Sporting Kansas City 9:30 PM
Los Angeles
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters



Date/Opponent Time W L Score
2014 preseason     
Aug 8 - vs. Oakland 7 pmX10-6
Aug 16 - vs. Arizona 7:30 pmX30-28
Aug 23 - at Kansas City 7 pmX30-12
Aug 28 - at Tennessee 7 pmX19-3
2014 regular season     
Sep 7 - at St. Louis NoonX34-6
Sep 14 - vs. New England NoonX30-7
Sep 21 - at New Orleans NoonX20-9
Sep 28 - vs. Atlanta 3:25 pmX41-28
Oct 2 - at Green Bay 7:25 pmX42-10
Oct 12 - vs. Detroit NoonX17-3
Oct 19 - at. Buffalo NoonX17-16
Oct 26 - at Tampa Bay NoonX19-13 ot
Nov 2 - vs. Washington NoonX29-26
Nov 9 - Bye
Nov 16 - at Chicago NoonX21-13
Nov. 23 - vs. Green Bay NoonX24-21
Nov. 30 - vs. Carolina NoonX31-13
Dec 7 - vs. NY Jets NoonX30-24 ot
Dec 14 - at Detroit 3:25 pmX16-14
Dec 21 - at Miami NoonX37-35
Dec 28 - vs. Chicago NoonX13-9




question of the day

Poll: Where will Adrian Peterson be playing in 2015?

Weekly Question