A look at 10 of the best opposing athletes to compete in the Metrodome.
Who knew? The NBA’s third-highest career scorer had 45 points in the first regular-season NBA game at the Metrodome in the Bulls’ 96-84 victory over the Timberwolves on Nov. 8, 1989. Jordan and teammate Scottie Pippen are two of 15 players on the NBA’s 50th anniversary team to appear at the Dome in the 1989-90 season, joining Charles Barkley, Larry Bird, Clyde Drexler, Patrick Ewing, Magic Johnson, Karl Malone, John Stockton, Kevin McHale, Hakeem Olajuwon, Robert Parish, David Robinson, Isiah Thomas and James Worthy.
The NFL’s career receiving leader made his professional debut in the Metrodome on Sept. 8, 1985. He caught four passes for 67 yards from Joe Montana. Nineteen years later Rice played his second-to-last game of a Hall of Fame career at the Dome with the Seahawks, catching five passes for 52 yards from a quarterback — Matt Hasselbeck — who was 9 years old when Rice first drew an NFL paycheck.
More than 20,000 soccer-crazed fans gathered at the Metrodome in November 2007 to see international star David Beckham and the Los Angeles Galaxy play the Minnesota Thunder. The English World Cup veteran was an instant hit and gave fans what they paid to see when he bent a free kick to a teammate for the game’s first goal.
LT padded his unanimous NFL MVP stats in 1986 when the Giants came to the Dome for a pre-Thanksgiving tilt with the Vikings. Taylor recorded two sacks in the 22-20 victory, part of Taylor’s 20.5-sack season that helped the Giants win Super Bowl XXI.
Marino only played one game in the Dome during his stellar career but he made it count, even if the Dolphins didn’t pull out the victory. After the Vikings jumped out to a 28-0 lead in Week 4 of the 1994 season Marino passed for three consecutive touchdowns. Marino finished 29 of 54 for 431 yards, the second-to-last 400-yard passing game of his career.
His career might have stopped short of its potential but Sanders did some damage at the Dome. He ran for 220 yards and a career-high four touchdowns in a 34-14 romp over the Vikings in Detroit’s breakout 1991 season. Six years later, Sanders’ best as a pro, he ran for 138 yards in Week 15, putting him 131 yards shy of 2,000. He eclipsed the mark in the Lions’ season finale.