Vikings dispute AEG’s claim of relocation talks

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Well, this is getting interesting.

Not long after a meeting between AEG and the Vikings to supposedly discuss only the creation of an L.A. Live-style complex at Arden Hills, Minnesota, Tim Leiweke of AEG has included the Vikings in a list of five teams with which AEG has spoken regarding the possibility of a sale and relocation.

The Vikings are now tiptoeing around the stuff that came from Leiweke’s two lips.

Per Tom Pelissero of,Vikings V.P. of public affairs and stadium development Lester Bagley said that the team is “100 percent focused on getting the job done in Minnesota.”

Bagley also said there has been no contact with AEG since the May 24 meeting regarding the Arden Hills project.

“We believe we’re in position to get our situation resolved this year in a special session,” Bagley said.  “That’s where our energy is focused.”

So is now there a rift between AEG and the Vikings?  Hardly.  The Vikings are going to try to get a deal done in Minnesota.  And they can truly say they’re “100 percent focused” on making that happen.  If it doesn’t happen, a certain percentage of that focus may drift to California.

Indeed, consider Bagley’s words carefully.  At no point does he deny talking to AEG about a possible relocation.  He only says that the Vikings are focused on building a stadium in Minnesota.

Even if the Vikings never would move to Los Angeles, the specter of a Lakers-style exodus should be enough to get the people in Minnesota to realize that they could end up losing their NFL team.

53 responses to “Vikings dispute AEG’s claim of relocation talks

  1. who wants to work in the minnesota legislature or be governor of the state of minnesota if the vikings leave?

  2. Al Davis wanted a new stadium to stay in L.A. Why isn’t he jumping all over AEG right now?

  3. Like they are actually going to stand up and say “Yes, We are going to relocate to LA” You’re not gonna know until a deal is either in place or close to it.

  4. There is no incentive for the Vikings to stay.
    Here is my TOP 5 REASONS TO LEAVE.
    1. Fans don’t go to games. They have trouble selling out each year.
    2. The Team has to pony up more money to stay in MN than if they moved.
    3. The value of the franchise goes up a couple hundred million if the team relocates.
    4. Tailgating/Parking for everyone.
    5. L.A. Vikings sounds cooler!

  5. ziggy is in the driver’s seat. He’ll get is stadium and make millions or he sells the team, makes less money and walks away. He won’t be his problem anymore. Nice deal for him. Not us.

  6. The vikings leaving isn’t unpopular… Handing the vikes over taxpayers money is.

    It would make sense if Minnesota built a stadium and profited off of it. Think of it as an expo grounds sort of thing. They lease to Ziggy for the football season, but the state at least tries to pay for the stadium through leases. The Metrodome was done with this business model in mind and made a decent profit. Because this would just be primarily a football stadium it’s not going to do as well.

    Why won’t they even look at renovating the MetroDump. An idea that get 60% approval! Would cost half to 1/3 as much and in the end be just as good.

    But what’s on the table is just foolishness. It is literally making another billion for a billionaire when the state can’t afford to build bridges or even run a government.

    All for the right to keep a franchise that hasn’t won anything ever and isn’t positioned to win in the future and only 21% of the population support…

  7. Hey, if AEG keeps spouting off on the Vikes, and this site continues the doomsday chants to rile up the masses and generate a zillion oh so original “LA Vikings” hits, Viking fans will put up with it if it gets the legislature off their collective posteriors.

  8. it will be a current ca team if any ends up there at all. raiders or chargers. NFL has too much money to lose to relocate the Vikings in a market that takes up at least 6 states and 30 countries.

    PFT is making inuendo and splitting hairs on this report and trying to turn nothing into something. nuttin but ambulance chasers via internet

  9. I’m confident a deal will get done. The Twins can even more dangerously close to being moved, and everything worked out fine. There is a lot more stuff that would have to happen for the Vikes to move.

    Besides, what’s so great about LA? They’d have to play in that LA Coliseum dump for three years before they’d even get a flashy new stadium.

    Of course then you could also say they have to play in that Metrodome dump for three years before they’d even get a flashy new stadium….

    Regardless, it would totally be Minnesota sportsesque if Ponder turned out to be the real deal then moved to LA immediately. Kinda like Mike Modano.

  10. What is the fastest way to scare away loyal fans and inhibit season ticket sales?

    Answer: tell the fans that the team might move and it has nothing to do with their loyalty, but rather the fate depends on their elected officials to build a stadium that they can’t afford.

  11. This is like having your gf say she’s not cheating on you with the guy she’s been hanging out with by herself. Then a few months later you find out she’s been banging the guy the whole time… Stay in mn Vikings! Don’t be that backstabbing girlfriend!

  12. Is Bud Grant dead? Because if he is, he just rolled over in his grave at the very THOUGHT of the Vikings moving anywhere, especially a warm-weather site.

    Is Bud Grant alive? Because if he is, he just squinted off in the distance at the very THOUGHT of the Vikings moving anywhere, especially a warm-weather site.

    Either way, I wouldn’t mess with the Bud Grant Mojo, Mr. Wilf, and Mr. Bagley (if that is indeed your real name). You’re going to put yourself in a world of hurt.

  13. Don’t read too much into this. AEG is trying to maintain momentum in getting the stadium built in LA. Notice that the project has gone from being a ‘host’ stadium to Anschutz buying a team. That means that no team wants to take AEG up on their initial offer.

    AEG has already demanded the city move quickly to approve the project (Public concerns be disregarded.) in order to secure a team. Laughable proposition but something politicians will salivate over.

    The fact remains no one has committed to move to LA and no team will announce such a thing until they are 100% ready. It is becoming clearer to all the Roski project is superior and AEG is simply trying to keep up the facade that it is the best project of the two.

  14. “NFL has too much money to lose to relocate the Vikings in a market that takes up at least 6 states and 30 countries.”

    Interesting statement. You could say this about EVERY team in the NFL. And in case you haven’t noticed, the NFL and Players are currently tip toeing dangerously close to losing a good portion of $9 billion if they can’t come to agreement on a new CBA. Sorry, but the Vikings contribution to the NFL is much, much less than that.

    I think it is time that the Viking fan base man up and take up a petition to renovate the Metrodome. A $1.4 billion new stadium seems like a waste of money for a team that can’t sell out playoff games…….

  15. jpmelon says:
    Jun 10, 2011 5:23 PM
    What is the fastest way to scare away loyal fans and inhibit season ticket sales?

    Answer: tell the fans that the team might move and it has nothing to do with their loyalty, but rather the fate depends on their elected officials to build a stadium that they can’t afford.


    Hey I was there too!! Anaheim/LA circa 1993-94 (unless you are from Houston)

    Los Angeles Rams does sound good though…

    As Yogi Berra said – “It’s like deja-vu, all over again. “

  16. I do not care where in MN they build the thing. Please just get the thing done. Yes it would be funny if the Vikes left MN, until we thought about it. Pack/Vikes/Bears/Lions is what real NFL football is about. Those games are what you look at when the schedule comes out. If the Vikes do leave it will be Pervy and Contra fault. Go Pack.

  17. they are not going to renovate the metrodome, that I would think has been well established. the state of minnesota only has one leverage card……and it aint renovating…if that is their offer, they will no sooner get the word out of their mouth than the u-hauls will be pulling out of winter park for LA.

  18. tumsman2 says:

    1. Fans don’t go to games. They have trouble selling out each year.

    Do you have hard data on this? Do they consistently have trouble selling out, or are ticket sales slow when a) the team isn’t very good, or b) discretionary income is tight, or c) a and b? If it’s the former, then you have a point; if it’s the latter, then you’d have to extend that claim to many of the teams in the NFL

    2. The Team has to pony up more money to stay in MN than if they moved.

    It appears that AEG has declared that it (or more correctly Phil Anschutz) wants and ownership stake the Los Angeles franchise, which is reasonable. So, while “The Team” would have to make a greater investment in the stadium in Minnesota to remain in place, the owner would have to reduce his control over the team if they moved.

    3. The value of the franchise goes up a couple hundred million if the team relocates.

    Well . . . maybe, although — see rebuttal #2, above.

    4. Tailgating/Parking for everyone.

    ???? Parking in downtown L.A. is already terrible, and from what I’ve seen, the new plans don’t do much to address the issue. If you are envisioning acres of contiguous parking lot with legions of BBQ-grilling, cooler-bearing fans, you might want to take a quick GoogleEarth look at the spot in question.

    5. L.A. Vikings sounds cooler!

    Los Angeles Vikings sounds cooler . . .
    Please rank the following in order of “coolness:”
    New England Dolphins
    Pittsburgh Cowboys
    New York Broncos
    Oakland Bills
    Chicago 49ers

  19. rcunningham says: “. . . They’d have to play in that LA Coliseum dump for three years before they’d even get a flashy new stadium.”

    I doubt the Coliseum would be the option. USC has what amounts to an exclusive lease on the stadium, and it’s unlikely they would cooperate. If I recall, USC’s contract with the venue was one of the major sticking points on the last NFL go-round here, and the terms of that contract weren’t as trojan-centric as the current one.

    Now, there is a nice historic stadium up in Pasadena that might be interested in financing some restoration/preservation with a couple of years’ worth of lease payments from an NFL franchise . . .

  20. In the 90’s, the North Stars left…

    In 00’s, MLB threatened to contract the Twins…

    In the 10’s, the Vikes might leave for LA…

    Damn its hard to be a sports fan in Minnesota! All you other states and teams have it easy!

  21. Hey fatty Tumsmen 2″ you don’t know diddly, go bother green bay fans, Vikings always sellout games unless there’s 2′ of snow. you wouldnt know that though. you don’t know much about the Vikings do you? 1/2 the people on this sight don’t know or love the Vikings. why do they even try to insult Minnesotans? there jealous of true fans, hang in there Minnesota, if the Vikings were to move, NFL loses millions of fans.(period) AEG is building downtown LA, Minnesota in the burbs is highly suspicious, and don’t forget about the North Stars shaft> people will rage. trust me.

  22. It’s a bit like the movement to relocate the Packers to Pocatello, Idaho, to take advantage of the better economy, climate, and fan base there.

  23. I don’t want the Vikings to leave MN, but if the taxpayers and politicians do not want to help keep them in the state through some sort of tax/racino/etc… I guess they should go where they are wanted and it will be rightfully so. Just at least change the name like the Ravens did with the Browns name and exit the NFC North. It would just be too weird seeing the “LA” Vikings.

  24. People can debate the merits of taxpayers picking up the $$ of new stadiums for sports teams but here is what I don’t get in Minnesota…

    The state was willing to build a shiny new baseball stadium for an incredibly cheap owner (Polhad) that will be use for baseball only….

    … But won’t pick up 2/3 of the cost for a football stadium for an owner that genuinely seems to want to spend $$ and put a good product on the field. Especially knowing an indoor stadium will have plenty of other uses (read “ways to generate $$”) than football. Makes no sense.

    People in Minnesota have basically two options…

    1) Pick up 2/3 of the stadium cost now, or

    2) Pick up 100% of the cost of a new stadium when they lure away another team (Bills, Jaguars, etc…) because the Vikes will leave.

    Personally I’d bit the bullet and go with #1

  25. Re: drstrangelust, Jun 10, 2011 7:10 PM

    Don’t forget the Timberwolves being all but sold and moved to New Orleans in ’94, back when Minnesota sports fans still kinda-sorta gave a rat’s @$$ about the Timberwolves.

    Anyhow, for those who say LA won’t fill a stadium for an NFL team, keep in mind that to the NFL that’s almost beside the point. LA’s candidacy for NFL relocation is all about their being the 900-lb gorilla of untapped TV markets. A Los Angeles-based team could have all their home games blacked out, and get a fraction of the Vikings’ local ratings for their televised road games, and still end up with a bigger total TV audience over the course of the season than the Twin Cities area simply due to the sheer size of the LA TV market. This is the one and only reason LA is still on the NFL’s radar at all. It’s also the one and only reason the NFL needs.

  26. if they stay in mn they might as well be in oregon. no sports fans, just a bunch of hippies. personal experience here..

  27. Minnesota has been twiddling its thumbs for years now so if the Vikes move, they have no one to blame but themselves. What’s going to shock Vikings fans, ultimately, is how suddenly the news of the move will come – along with the realization that they are powerless to do anything about it. Ask Cleveland and Houston.

  28. The Vikings are not moving because the politicians know the money generated by the team is astronomical compared to the cost and this would be over a 30-40 year period. This article is nothing but conjecture.

    Oh yeah, Goobar is a loser and when the day comes that anything he says about the Vikings means anything will be the day they move to LA. Talk about the unwanted guest that just does not know when to leave.

  29. grandsonofcoach says: Jun 10, 2011 7:21 PM

    I’m a Packer fan who lives in MN and think it would be a crying shame if the Vikings move to LA.

    Example of a classy and civil Pack fan.

  30. The people on here that are quibbling about attendance figures aren’t really getting it.

    Having a team in LA is all about the next TV contract. If the NFL puts a team there, the increase in TV revenues will be all that matters.

    They could play in an empty stadium and just CGI fans into the TV broadcast and they would make money.

    And stadium revenue wouldn’t be an issue anyway. They’ll just put 500 luxury suites in it and sell them to entertainment industry big wigs.

    Believe me, this is happening.

  31. tumsman2 says:
    Jun 10, 2011 5:06 PM
    There is no incentive for the Vikings to stay.
    Here is my TOP 5 REASONS TO LEAVE.
    1. Fans don’t go to games. They have trouble selling out each year.
    2. The Team has to pony up more money to stay in MN than if they moved.
    3. The value of the franchise goes up a couple hundred million if the team relocates.
    4. Tailgating/Parking for everyone.
    5. L.A. Vikings sounds cooler!
    This is one of the most nonsensicle posts ever.
    1. The Vikings have sold out every game over the past several years.
    2. You have to look at the big picture. This statement may not be true in a long term basis.
    3. How the hell would you know?
    4. Who’s to say the new stadium if they get it wouldn’t have tailgating or parking?
    5. No it doesn’t.

  32. To all of you that “claim” the Vikings cannot sell out a game, its time you pony up $60 and actually show up at a game to prove it to me, ESPECIALLY PLAYOFF GAMES. Im calling you out, every one of you that claims the Vikings do not sell out are DEAD WRONG. They have had a sell out streak for 12 years, does not matter if for a couple of games it was corporations buying up 2,000 seats to save advertising dollars from blackout and playoff games are completely sold out and standing for 4 quarters. JUST STOP YOUR LIES!!

    Goombar, metrodump is a dump!! infrastrucure sucks, no tailgaiting, its a bigger waste of money to renovate than a brand new stadium is to build and creates more jobs.

    You dont have to like it but i dont here ya bitchin bout payin for twins or wild. GET OVER IT OR GET OUT OF TOWN.

    your taxes will end up going up anyway with all of the jobs lost if they leave. you actually think the state will say “ok, Vikinngs are gone, got to cut another $400 mil out of budget”. Good luck with that

  33. Comparing the Twins to the vikings is very different. First, the Twins are successful. Second, there are many more home baseball games. 81 to be exact vs. min 10 for football (unless the roof collapses). So more revenue can be generated. The project cost less than half as much as what Ziggy wants too.

    But it was also very unpopular and will be the death of Pawlenty’s little presidential campaign. Can’t be a fiscal con and be giving bailouts to the rich.

    As far as the unhinged vikingfan, you can’t ignore the fact corporations are buying tickets and dumping them. If the fan support isn’t there, why throw money at it? Why don’t they ask the fans for the money? Because they already know they wouldn’t get it.

    And the future looks even more bleak. If revenue sharing disappears, what happens then? The vikes will surely come to politicians and beg for tax dollars again. And here you will be telling us that we need to give Ziggy our money or he’ll take the vikes to a different city to make a profit. Then will lose money on an empty stadium!

    As far as paying for the Wild and Twins, I wasn’t here when that was voted on and shoved down the throats of taxpayers. I came here after that… So by moving here I accepted that. But that doesn’t mean I have to accept future bailouts for billionaires.

    And saying my taxes will go up anyway… Not if I say no and the 75% of us SHUT IT DOWN! The “revenue” generated by the vikes won’t pay the interest on the bonds w/o the 200 mil money gap that will surely be put to bonds too.

    The vikes need to compromise (it ain’t such a dirty word) and look for a cheaper solution. A 400-500 mil renovation of the MetroDump would easily make it a viable source of revenue and it would be affordable for Ziggy and the NFL and viking fans. And virtually no taxes to those not into football or the vikes need be included.

    But telling me I have to get taxed to buy my kid a Packer jersey or any jersey to fund another team I don’t care for is incredulous. Telling me I have to pay more in sales tax so Ziggy can get richer is insane. They wont even tell me the other surprises they have in taxes, Bagely is keeping secret and only alludes to. And telling me I have no say, I shouldn’t have a vote? HECK NO!

    Honestly, this government is tyrannical if they get away with this. Don’t they realize one revolution was fought in this country when those elitist in charge thought they could tax folks without representation!

    By the way vikefan, please move when your favorite franchise leaves too. 75% of us think you should – that’s your fellow Minnesotans not in favor of bailouts for billionaires.

  34. To clarify my remarks:

    When I said “believe me, this is happening” I didn’t mean to insinuate that it would be the Vikings.

    I just mean that there will definitely be a team moving there.

    I won’t speculate on which one, but for a clue I would look at market size.

  35. vikefan says:
    Jun 10, 2011 5:18 PM

    it will be a current ca team if any ends up there at all. raiders or chargers.

    It would be more likely to be an out of state team. Moving the Raiders or Chargers to LA brings no new business to California. Moving the Jaguars, Vikings, Rams, whoever- does.

  36. ejmat2 says:
    Jun 10, 2011 10:23 PM
    This is one of the most nonsensicle posts ever.
    1. The Vikings have sold out every game over the past several years.

    Oh yeah? Every game? If I remember right they were thousands short of selling out a college stadium with 20,000 less seats than the Metrodome…Yep. LA bound.

  37. Yes they have sold out every game since ’97. Look it up.

    The TCF game really? It was a displaced game with General Admission with bench seats, no alcohol and in a 2 foot snowstorm. Yea…. Good job idiot.

    They aren’t leaving and when it doesn’t happen I will remember everyone of your names. Read something else besides “stir the pot” PFT for once.

    Not being able to sell out playoff games? Ohhh that Eagles game they didn’t know would be at home till 6 days before they played it. 2,ooo paid for buy businesses out of 65,000 isn’t exactly a struggle when you play in that craphole…

    Go there once and tell me if it’s empty. I have been a season tix holder for 13 years and it never is.

    Keep drinking the PFT kool-aid…

  38. goombar2 says: Jun 10, 2011 11:27 PM

    bailouts for billionaires


    Oh man, and the Loser comes full circle. Not only is he a Wisconsin native, obnoxious Pack fan, living in Minnesota in order to earn a damn living because Wisconsin failed him, constantly criticizes the Vikings, and has the audacity to dictate what, when, and where a stadium is or is not built. All the while singing the deadbeat rallying cry of “NO Bailouts for Billionaires”!!! Lmao!

    No, sorry but everything in your post is wrong. Especially and most importantly the deadbeat rallying cry. Were it not for these billionaires, a huge portion of state income would be gone and so would worthless jobs, probably like yours. You see, it makes business sense to spend some money in order to make a lot of it. Also, the only residents that would be taxed a mere pittance (something like 5 cents on 20 dollars) would be Ramsey county because lo and behold, the stadium is built there. All other tax benefit comes from people utilizing the facility and not state wide taxation or “bailout” as you losers like to say.

    The facility is a money maker and it would return a significant portion to the state for its investment. Wilf and the Vikings are pumping in 40% to help construct it and will cover any cost overruns. The Metrodome is a dump and uninhabitable for any NFL team that wants to compete. Your bandaid solutions only solidify your ignorance not only for what constitutes a successful business but also how that business needs to be run.

    Finally, over 80% of Minnesotans want the Vikes to get a new stadium. They may not be all in agreement as to where, but they agree that it needs to be done so they can keep the Vikings. 2/3rds feel the Vikings are important to the state. 60% of people polled now agree that public funding for Target field was worth it. Your 75% figure is absurd and comes from a loaded question. Many opposed Target Field and now support not only it, but public subsidy of it. Same and more will be the case for the Vikings complex, despite the deadbeat rallying cry.

  39. who are all of the idiots that claim to know so much that isn’t so on here????????????????
    I have been a season ticket holder for 17 years (NOT including my dad’s season tickets back in the 70’s at the Met)-every game has been sold out since 1996- that game at TCF-you mean the one where they told us we wouldnt have an assigned seat and we had to wait outside in line for 3 hours before kickoff in a snowstorm to get in?????? THAT ONE???? MOST teams wouldn’t have even had 42,000 people show up with a team that was in last place playing in a blizzard-LMAO!!!

    YES there was ONE playoff game that had a hard time selling out because quite frankly even though we won the division that year-the team was BORING and most realistic fans knew we had zero chance of going far in the playoffs-and we were right-got our butts kicked by the Eagles.
    you know-people rip Vikings fans on here for having a hard time selling tickets-but EVERY SINGLE Vikings game has been on television since 1996- can the Raiders, Cardinals, Rams, Browns, Lions, Jaguars, Chargers, Bucs, Bills, Bengals, Panthers say that???? I think NOT!!!

    If you dont live in Minnesota you wouldnt understand that our politicians put everything off until the last possible second-we lost the North Stars because of that same thinking-they can’t even agree on a budget ever-they even screwed up the Metrodump when they built it-it didn’t even have air conditioning or a color scoreboard!!!

    we have no problems subsidizing the arts here that put no money back into our economy like the Vikings do & we are for some reason afraid to put slots in at a racetrack that would mean that we wouldn’t even need to raise any taxes-oh yeah and did I mention that as nice as Target field is-the Twins had to settle on the smallest piece of land in major league baseball and cram a stadium in there?? Thats how we roll in Minnesota-we have TONS of land but let’s put it where we shouldn’t LOL!!

  40. Let’s say if the Vikings had to move to Los Angeles.. the AEG stadium is poorly designed, it would be among the smallest in the NFL and there is no space for tailgating, limited parking, terrible traffic congestion etc. Meanwhile there is a MUCH BETTER stadium plan for LA at Grand Crossing. Roski’s Majestic Realty plan calls for a stadium that would be among the largest and it would be located in an area that is closer to the larger Southern CA population. Even if the Vikings are rejecting the AEG plan, it is possible that they are considering Roski’s plan.

  41. I love it… More numbers without any links… I’ve put down the links to everything I’ve said. I have no reason to lie. But you have done nothing but lie (80% want a new stadium! Ha!), so if you put down a number – put a link to it.

    You don’t even know what’s going to be taxed. Bagely hasn’t revealed all the taxes he plans to get the politicians to “agree” to in order to build this boondoggle.

    And what makes the MetroDump unusable? Lambeau field is considered one of the best places to watch football and the field was opened in ’56… If Lambeau can be renovated and made into a money maker, why not the MetroDump? The new stadium wouldn’t have anymore seats, so what’s the problem?

    I can tell you another way the vikes could save money, they could give up on the museum idea… First of all, what history is there worth preserving? How much a team can lose and still get welfare? And second, lucust says you guys don’t even care that much about winning… Yet I’m gonna get taxed for it? Find another sucker!

  42. To Goobar, please refer to my comment on Jun 11, 2011 3:21 AM as I do not need to either reiterate nor change anything. Everything is verifiable. Go back to Wisconsin to avoid any taxation and take the rest of the deadbeats with you.

  43. goombar, have ya heard? The Vikings are willing to pick up the entire tab for road improvements around the new proposed stadium site via loans through Ramsey county, ya know what that means? Not only are the Vikings diggin in deeper, so is Ramsey county. They both want this so bad, one is offering a loan to the other to help more get done!! I bet you will be one of the first schmucks in line trying to win a free ticket after it is built too!! So you can PLAINLY SEE, the Wilfs are NOT all about making a buck on their own, they ARE trying to build a place that benefits the community (which it will) and all around awesome entertainment complex. You may disagree which is fine, then draw a moral line and dont accept handouts either.

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