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Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Blackout watch

As the Vikings seek to avoid their first home blackout since 1997, an NFL spokesman said today that an extension of Thursday's noon deadline is possible.

Not certain, but possible.

"I can't say what the likelihood would be," Dan Masonson, the league's corporate communications director, said. "What I can say is there have been instances in the past when extensions have been granted to teams that have shown significant progress toward a sellout and there has been a contributing factor. In most cases, that was a holiday."

The Vikings weren't required to provide a ticket update today, but as of Tuesday afternoon, approximately 3,500 tickets remained for Sunday's regular-season opener against Atlanta.

If all aren't sold by the 72-hour deadline and no company steps forward to buy them, Masonson said the fact that Monday was a holiday could influence the NFL to grant an extension but that no decision would be made until Thursday.

Masonson said the fact that the Vikings have sold out 96 consecutive home games would not be a factor.

"I don't know that would play a part in it from a league standpoint," he said. "Teams have asked for and received extensions in the past, but those decisions were based on things like significant progress toward a sellout and a contributing factor like a holiday."


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