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But wait, didn’t things go very badly in Montreal before? They certainly did, but not because of the city nor its love of baseball. Corrupt government and underfunded ownership and a betrayed fan base – all of them saddled with the greatest white elephant in the history of North American sports construction, Olympic Stadium. In every full season between 1979 and 1983 – even in that XXL Airplane Hangar - Les Expos drew at least 2,102,173 fans a year.
The peak total – 2,320,651 in 1983 – edged out the Cardinals for second place in National League attendance, and was just about a million more than the Mets drew in New York. It was about then that stuff started falling from the roof of the tribute to provincial graft, and star players started falling off the Expos’ roster. But make no mistake about it: Montreal supported baseball. As late as 1997 the Expos still brought in a million-and-a-half fans (more than the Mets or the Giants).
Montreal is a happening place. They have the Grand Prix of Canada Formula 1 race downtown. Great transit system. Maple syrup.
Does a Montreal baseball team get Youppi back from le Habs?
I think in the US there is a belief that none of those Frenchies care based on the attendances when the team was in its death spiral and that's just not true.
Nah, just get rid of Loria. But if a team gies to Canada, maybe Vancouver is the way to go. It would help reduce the crazy travel schedules of Seattle and the other west coast teams--of course, that would involve jerking Houston around, again.
I'd love to see baseball back in Montreal, but I do think supporters here downplay the legitimate issues the Montreal franchise faced that existed long before Loria got his fiendish hands on the franchise.
It just seems to me that the Montreal supporters I read here look at the franchise's history through some seriously rose-colored glasses.
They never had any money to pay guys
I don't know if the Big O was as objectively bad as Cleveland Stadium, but I think it is as disliked as Cleveland Stadium or the Trop or Candlestick. The debt, the roof that never worked, it's terrible sightlines for baseball and so on.
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