Leipold Issues Statement On Coleman’s Stadium Proposal

Earlier today, St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman offered up a proposal in which a 2-cent fee would be added to alcoholic beverages sold in bars statewide. He said the money would be used to pay for a new Vikings stadium in Minneapolis, $75 million in upgrades to Xcel Energy Center and recreation fields throughout the state and a new ballpark for the St. Paul Saints.

As part of this proposal, the Target Center in downtown Minneapolis would close, and the NBA’s Minnesota Timberwolves and WNBA’s Minnesota Lynx would move into Xcel Energy Center.

In response to this proposal, Wild owner Craig Leipold issued the following statement:

Since the beginning of the legislative session, the Minnesota Wild has been in support of a global solution which would address all of the state’s professional sports facilities.

This proposal from Mayor Coleman, for the Xcel Energy Center to host the Timberwolves and Lynx, is a new idea in this discussion. It is certainly possible from a facility standpoint.  Multiple tenants in one building is common and is the case in most major markets around the country including Dallas, Denver, Chicago, and Los Angeles, where the Staples Center hosts three major league sports teams. While we haven’t discussed this idea with the Timberwolves, we would be happy to do so if the Wolves were interested in discussing this proposal.

Over the past few years, the Wild has developed plans for building improvements to keep the Xcel Energy Center a state of the art facility, including a multi-level expansion on the building’s north side. We have also supported the City of St. Paul’s work to build an Amateur Sports Center of Excellence on 7th Street across from the arena, which could also be used as a practice facility for the Wild.  Those existing plans could easily be modified to accommodate the needs of the Timberwolves and Lynx, including additional locker rooms, lower bowl modifications and additional retail and office space should the Wolves and Lynx decide to move to St. Paul.

We remain in close partnership with the City of Saint Paul and are a willing participant in this or any discussion on sports facilities reform and a potential global solution.

The Wild will offer no further comments at this time.

9 responses to “Leipold Issues Statement On Coleman’s Stadium Proposal

  1. i think this is a great idea .. i personally feel that the target center is a horrible venue .. both inside and outside … and i love the xcell so id reather have that upgraded as much as possible then target center .. the x is a very nice venue for both sports and concerts … so it would make sense to me that we keep that building as nice and up to date with all the new technology… so im defiantly going to support this idea

  2. Trade the t-wolves for another hockey team! Even their draft pics don’t want to be here. No one cares about b-ball anyways. How about downtown casino? To pay for it. Also outdoor rink as part of upgrades to excel? I want a winter classic here. If Cali can have 3 teams why cant

  3. I object and so should Craig. You don’t need to deal with the logistics of having 2 teams with the same season trying to use the same building.

  4. Don’t forget about the SWARM! I would take them over b-ball anyday. Plus I think the swarm draws more fans.

  5. While the help with Revenue would be very welcome and help us to maintain the excellent Xcel facility, it would mean more opportunities for scheduling conflicts. If on the other hand having other teams at the Xcel would mean lower Wild ticket prices, I am ALL for it.

  6. Not really liking this proposal. One of the reasons why I love the “X” so much is because it specifically caters to hockey (and lacrosse, of course) and it’s fans. You throw in the T-Puppies and the Lynx in the same building and you’re basically “muddying the brand”. I mean, think about it; would you want to put another sport in Target Field? It loses some of the magic, if you take my meaning.

    Of course, what do I know; I’m just a South Dakota hockey fan but, having just been to my first Wild (and NHL) game on April 2nd (against the Bolts, no less; crush them Boston!) at the X, I really feel a connection to the place and really feel like I’m home. I do like the sound of cheaper tickets though.

  7. GROSS, Keep the Timber-SUX out of the Xcel Center. It is for the MN WILD, not the crappy Timber-pups. Sell the Pups and get them out of Minny. We are the State of Hockey and we don’t need b-ball in the X. I would hate to see Timber-pups garbage in the X. You walk into the X and you see the history of the State of Hockey all over, adding B-ball stuff would completely RUIN the atmosphere and again, there is NO PLACE for basketball at the X. I get our point but just sell the Pups and get them out of Minny!!!!!

  8. I will also give up my season tix if the Timber-SUX move to the X. Just seeing their crap all over the X would make me wanna puke. I would rather pay more for my tix and have just the Wild then have the pups “muddy the brand” (like Dakota said above).

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