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HAVE THE EXPOS PLAYED THEIR LAST GAME IN MONTREAL?
Published September 17, 1998
Finance Minister Bernard Landry "shot down a new proposal" to finance a downtown Montreal ballpark for the Expos with government-guaranteed bonds that would be repaid out of taxes on players' salaries, according to Clark & Gyulai of the Montreal GAZETTE. The Quebec government has said repeatedly that "it will not guarantee debt racked up to build a new stadium," and Landry said yesterday that it "has no intention of changing that refusal." Landry: "A guarantee is a guarantee. And if you sign somewhere, it means that ultimately you could have to pay. I think that the figures are not there. Mathematically, I think it's nonsense." The Expos have set September 30 as the deadline for coming up with a financing plan for a new stadium. Team President Claude Brochu has warned that the team "may be sold if the stadium plan does not come together by the deadline" (Clark & Gyulai, Montreal GAZETTE, 9/17). HOME FINALE: The Expos drew 13,540 for last night's home finale, bringing the season total to 914,909 -- the third-lowest total in team history. The Expos drew 908,292 in '75 and 646,704 in '76, the team's last season at Jarry Park (AP/ESPN.com, 9/17). In Montreal, Jack Todd writes that at the home final, which was "perhaps the final home game in their 30-year history in Montreal -- the sharks were already circling" (Montreal GAZETTE, 9/17). WAITING FOR BROCHU: Beaver Sports' Don Beaver, who "wants to bring big league baseball to Charlotte, will have to wait a while" to see what happens with the Expos. The Expos "won't seek permission to talk to potential buyers until after" the September 30 deadline. Expos spokesperson Sina Gabrielli: "It all just depends what happens September 30" (Foon Rhee, CHARLOTTE OBSERVER, 9/17).