On Sunday, gamblers got "a tell" that could pay off if they have the savvy and patience to let the wine ferment.
On the after-the-news sports shows Sunday night, Vikings stadium point-man Lester Bagley was being interviewed on KARE-11, the Twin Cities NBC affiliate. As the discussion turned to the artsy look of the new stadium, Bagley was Minnesota-nicely goaded by interviewer Dave Schwartz to respond to social media comments from Packers fans about the design of the new stadium. As would be expected, the responses from Packer Nation were as original as the seat-configuration of Lambeau Field.
Bagley, in a moment of candor, shot back at the disparaging remarks from Green Bay fans by giving those in the business of increasing local economic activity in area bars and restaurants a little "behind the curtain" info.
Bagley said that Packers fans will likely be in a position to give a first-hand review of the new Vikings stadium because, as he was quick to point out, the recent history of new NFL stadiums is to have the pomp and circumstance of the first game occur against a team its fan base hates most. For the Vikings, that team would be Green Bay.
Bagley effectively said that, when the new Vikings stadium opens in 2016, the first home game will be against Green Bay. For the "glass half-empty" crowd, that could also translate into a December visit to Lambeau.
While it's impossible to lock down the date of the Vikings' home opener in the new stadium – Week 1 or Week 2 unless there is bad buzz about the "turn over the keys" date – it would seem that the wheels of the "big event" atmosphere are already in motion. How does this impact the low-level Minnesota gambler?
It's quite simple for moderate risk-takers. Make the simple offer of going halves on a 2016 season ticket package with a close friend (and dupe) and make the pre-emptive caveat that, while the two of you will split the tickets lottery-style – I pick one, you pick one – you really want the tickets for the home opener. That's a deal breaker.
If a self-styled "I go to every game" Packers fan wants to attend the game at Minnesota, it has always come with a price. In most cases, a pretty inflated price. The first game in Minnesota's new stadium? As MasterCard P.R. wonks would say, "priceless." It would pay for the other three games on your season pass to sell them to desperate Sconnys. Is it a sure thing? Definitely not. It is a hot tip? You got that right.
Some might say such a notion is a risk-reward proposition. If the Vikings open the new stadium against the Lions, it's a lose-lose prop bet. But those are the same people who were willing to bet $500 on Orb Saturday in order to win $300. No risk, no reward.
John Holler has been writing about the Vikings for more than a decade for Viking Update. Follow Viking Update on Twitter and discuss this topic on our message boards. To become a subscriber to the Viking Update web site or magazine, click here.