Found September 13, 2013 on
Fox Sports North:
MINNEAPOLIS -- Any potential obstacles to construction of the Vikings' new stadium appear to have been cleared.The Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority released its findings Friday in a due-diligence review of team owner Zygi Wilf and his family members whom a New Jersey judge says didn't live up to their end of agreements with two real estate partners. MSFA and its lawyers hired to execute the investigation came out fully satisfied the NFL team remains fully capable of financing its 477 million portion of the 975 replacement for the Metrodome.
The detailed probe, which began nearly a month ago, looked into potential damages that have yet to be awarded in the Wilfs' civil case, the owners' personal and financial background and the team's plan to foot its part of the stadium bill.
The report's most integral conclusion: "The significant holdings in cash and securities at July 31, 2013 by the Wilfs, buttressed by significant equity in investment properties also owned by the Wilfs, are considered to be reasonable and adequate to allow the Wilfs to meet their financial obligations under the planned Vikings stadium project, even if the worst-case scenario occurred in the New Jersey litigation and the Wilfs were required to satisfy a judgment to that amount."
In short, there's no doubt the Vikings can pay for their new digs.
It's what the team said all along through a lengthy and at times tense review process. The Vikings stepped away from negotiating the stadium's use and development agreements until Tuesday. Ground on the stadium can't be broken until both sides completely sign off on those two documents.
At one point, legal firm Dorsey and Whitney -- which carried out the due diligence -- stated publicly the Wilfs weren't providing all the necessary data to carry out their assignment.
But the authority in charge of stadium construction and operation and the planned palace's primary tenant can now move forward. If the sides agree to main principles in the use (lease) and development (construction) accords early next week and ratify them at the MSFA board's Sept. 27 meeting, the stadium's early November groundbreaking can take place as scheduled, MSFA chair Michele Kelm-Helgen said during a press conference Friday afternoon.
"We've got a lot of work to do," she cautioned. "We're not finished yet. Next week is gonna be a huge week. Assuming everybody can come together and be reasonable, we should be able to get through those agreements and have them done."
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