I’ve been to San Diego. I have friends who live there. Many are passionate about their team. It’s a beautiful place and they had a great stadium back in 2003. I was there performing a live radio show in front of it as part of the NFL Experience. Tampa beat Oakland in the game but I got a good feel for the city, its fans, and I thought this was a great market. As we now know the St. Louis Rams are moving back to LA and the Chargers are expected to be a part of that deal, but the owner, Dean Spanos has yet to announce the move from his side of this two-team move.
Is it because they’re a shrinking fan base? Bad Stadium? Greed? Justin Kanoya, a resident of San Diego, had this to say about the complicated situation.
“This whole situation is pretty difficult to narrow down to one quote. Honestly it is a combination of all those things. Stadium, yes SD needs a new one but there is no land to easily build one. Fans … there is an amazing fan base … among locals. But the fact is most of SD sports fans are transplants from other cities and that’s who is filling seats, as well as fans traveling from other cities to watch the visiting team.Greed … sure, the owners and the city don’t want to budge. And from the owner perspective, the lure of LA is too good.”
Kanoya is a local DJ who gets out and about and I think he’s absolutely nailed it. The team moved there in 1961 and I guess nothing is forever? I’ve seen Chargers fans in person at Jet games in New Jersey. It makes me think other teams might want to leave their markets when new areas get identified as being better than existing cities.
According to this website goo.gl/5e4kvs the Chargers were the 8th worst revenue generating team in 2014. They made a puny $304 million dollars. But when they see that the Dallas Cowboys made $620 million it makes owners want more.
The Chargers have never won the Super Bowl. They have a decent playoff history detailed here:
The mayor wants to continue negotiations if the owner will give up on Los Angeles. That’s a pretty weak position to have and it seems like he’ll lose the team based on that.
They are among 13 franchises who’ve never won the big game. Is this ultimately the reason why the move seems set in stone? I don’t think so.
Making money is the American way. Leaving NFL fans in the lurch when their franchises move is quickly becoming the American way as well.
Note: In a current Twitter poll I’m running. 58% of the voters think the team will move.
photo by Mike del Tufo