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New Minnesota Vikings Stadium Will Exorcise Metrodome's Atlanta Ghosts

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When you're the city home to the supposed America's Team of the American pastime (both designations not factually binding), there's no better patriotic boost after the 4th of July than news that the Braves' Mausoleum of dead World Series hopes is now highly likely to be refurbished into a polite Minnesotan pile of concrete shards.

The Hubert M. Humphrey Metrodome, disheveling at a brisk pace, is officially on notice with a new Vikings stadium plan close to approval. And we pray that with it will go the air conditioning screwjob, Kent Hrbeck, Charlie Liebrandt, plastic outfield barriers, rally rags and the whole Godforsaken, heart breaking dawn of the modern Atlanta Braves.

Despite having lost to almost every team in baseball in a playoff series since '91, nothing sticks in the craw of a Braves fan more than '91, because hindsight and rose-colored glasses surmise that if a single game in that plastic carpeted tool shed from hell would've gone Atlanta's way, maybe a true dynasty could've been born under Bobby Cox and company. Twenty years (with help from the Blue Jays and Yankees) has done little to salve this pain.

Of course, we'd be remiss in not mentioning Atlanta's delicious revenge seven years later. Minnesota's best shot at a Super Bowl title in team history was shattered when (of all things) a Dane conquered the Vikings in Atlanta's 30-27 NFC Championship victory. If videotaped evidence of Robert Smith being forced to choke down his own hubris gives you the same kind of breezy, magic marker high as we're currently floating on, enjoy the whole affair again over at Hulu.

When you consider Atlanta's short postseason presence in professional sports, between the '91 Series and the '98 NFC Championship there's no more historic road venue for this city's pro teams than the Metrodome. But don't interpret that observation as some kind of bittersweet embrace of its likely demolition: Even most of the locals want it burned to the ground, and toot sweet. It was a God awful venue for baseball, even among several God awful venues in the multipurpose hell of last generation stadium designs. Given that the Falcons' couldn't take the momentum of that conference title an win a Lombardi Trophy, the bad still far outweighs the good.

We'll see you and Chuck Knoblauch in hell, Metrodome.

Photographs by coka_koehler used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.