The Minnesota Vikings, Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority and SMG announced Tuesday that Patrick Talty has been hired as the company's general manager for the new Minnesota Vikings Stadium.
SMG was contracted to operate and manage the facility for the MSFA.
Talty joins SMG from World Wrestling Entertainment, Inc., where he most recently served as the senior vice president of live events. The Vikings say Talty worked as part of the leadership team that was responsible for global touring and event marketing.
"I'd opened a stadium once before and loved that," Talty told the Star Tribune Tuesday.
Talty brings with him experience from the WWE, which began online streaming of its matches and pay-per-views – a major shift in how fans access the shows.
That expertise will likely come in handy in Minnesota, as the Vikings are looking for more of a "fan experience" with the new stadium.
"Our focus is going to be to make this stadium as alive as we possibly can 365 days a year," Talty told the Star Tribune.
Talty's move to Minnesota has also fueled some Internet speculation that Minneapolis could host WrestleMania at some point, maybe as soon as 2017.
"What makes this news interesting to wrestling fans is the possibility of WWE hosting WrestleMania in Minneapolis for the first time. Because of potentially harsh weather that frequently extends into the spring months, WWE has avoided the Midwest for years, with the exception of the enclosed Ford Field in Detroit for WrestleMania 23.
With MetLife Stadium in 2013 and the brand new Levi's Stadium in 2015, the company is making a habit of attempting attendance records at newly constructed stadiums around the country. The city is shooting for a 2016 grand opening, and with expandable seating in the neighborhood of 73,000 – not to mention the new GM is a former WWE executive – it makes 'Vikings Stadium' a logical choice for WrestleMania in 2017."