From the Pioneer Press;

Posted on Sun, Jul. 02, 2006

[size=18px]Week in Review[/size]


[size=18px]Hrbek, Lurtsema suing their partner[/size]

Former Twins first baseman Kent Hrbek and former Vikings tackle Robert Lurtsema are suing a business partner who allegedly used their successful sports bar as loan collateral to prop up his crumbling empire of suburban eateries.

With business booming at the Benchwarmer Bob's Sports Café in Burnsville, part-owner Nicholas Grammas borrowed more than $1 million from Crown Bank with the stated purpose of improving the popular 13-year-old restaurant, according to the lawsuit.

Instead, Grammas allegedly used most of the money to shore up his own struggling businesses — including the Coyote Grill in Brooklyn Center, La Tortilla Ria in Bloomington and another Benchwarmer Bob's in Brooklyn Park.

The Coyote Grill, according to its Web site, has temporarily closed but plans "a new Grand Opening with a new menu and a new atmosphere." The Brooklyn Park Benchwarmer Bob's is also closed. La Tortilla Ria remains open.

With his restaurants foundering, Grammas also allegedly dipped into the sports bar's operations to cover his own expenses, including his medical and dental insurance premiums, personal utilities, and gas for his car.

The civil suit was filed in Dakota County in mid-June by five owners of the Burnsville bar, including Hrbek, Lurtsema, car dealer James W. Lupient, Tony Parker and Robert Paul.

Entire article: Week in Review