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MINNESOTANS LEARNING ABOUT ECONOMY FORMERLY KNOWN AS SPORTS
Published August 18, 1997
In the wake of the Timberwolves' Kevin Garnett turning down a $100M-plus contract offer and a public debate over funding for facilities for the Vikings, Twins and an NHL expansion team, the "new sports economy" was examined in a front-page Sunday feature by Jay Weiner of the Minneapolis STAR TRIBUNE. Weiner: "How we got here -- big salaries, overspending owners and public subsidies -- is already troubling to many Minnesotans. But where we're going is even more uncertain." Jeffrey Pollack, Publisher of The Sports Business Daily: "As long as the market is willing to bear it, the owners have to be willing and capable of paying it escalating salaries. It means that by buying tickets, watching sports on television and purchasing T-shirts and hats, fans are helping make sports a $52-billion-a-year industry." Weiner: "What makes pro sports so maddening for the average citizen-taxpayer, especially now in Minnesota, is that 'the market' is not just driven by owners, agents and customers. It is also driven by cities and states." MN Stadium Task Force Chair/State Sen. Keith Langseth: "The fear that people have is that we aren't at the peak of all of this. If we put in public money now, are we faced with being back here again? Somewhere along the line, this thing has got to correct itself" (Minneapolis STAR TRIBUNE, 8/17).