Stephen Ross was in good spirits Friday. He talked about those neon orange pants the Dolphins are going to unveil next week as part of their new uniforms (he was kidding, no orange pants). He joked about the identity of the team’s first-round draft pick.
But on the subject of upgrades to Sun Life Stadium, Ross was all business:
Ross: “Yes. If I die, my family will have to sell it and then that’s where I worry about who’s going to be the buyer when you don’t have a facility to play in, and you have declining attendance and you’re losing money. That’s when you have to worry about the Dolphins being able to stay in Miami. OK? I’m not threatening I’m going to move them. But I can’t rule from the grave.”
“We put money in every year. I bought the team, we [renovated] the facility, we put in all brand new concession stands. We’ve tried to upgrade everything. But things go down geometrically. Right now the cost is $350 [million] to $400 million to modernize it and have it be tantamount to a new stadium. You wait 10 years, you’re talking having to spend a billion dollars. You pass the point of no return. So that’s why it’s important now rather than later. And we’ve timed it so that we actually get an event. I said don’t spend the hotelier’s dollars if we don’t get an event. That’s what it amounts to. It makes sense.”