Red Rides Off Into Sunset

While his ownership of the Vikings ended officially Tuesday, some are speculating we haven't seen the last of Red McCombs.

In his last act as owner of the Vikings, Red McCombs did a last round of leaving messages for Vikings fans. While the words seemed genuine, the reaction from some of the media types around the Twin Cities was to interpret his words with scorn.

From TV guys saying they would "try to keep a straight face" to newspaper reporters reminding fans that McCombs took credit for the Spurs winning an NBA title six years after he sold that franchise, it seems that there was little love lost when the team was officially transferred to Zygi Wilf's group.

In a conference call, McCombs said the Vikings aren't his in actuality, but are still his in spirit.

"This year, it will be my team," McCombs said. "This will be my team regardless of the fact that we're totally out of ownership."

In a written release, he echoed those words, adding that "Purple Pride is alive and well in the McCombs family."

McCombs stated that part of the anticipated success the Vikings anticipate in 2005 will be the result of the numerous off-season moves made on his watch in the transition period of the sale of the team and, whether he is owner or not, the team is in better shape now than when he took over the team.

* Running back/return man Chad Morton came and left Winter Park without signing a contract.
* The Vikings made six roster moves Tuesday -- signing center Shawn Lynch and DT Matt Mitrione and releasing LBs Sarth Benoit and Ira Cooper, QB Jason Fife and DB Brandon Pinderhuges.

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