After 21 years, Los Angeles is getting an NFL team and maybe even two. The St. Louis Rams will be moving to the second biggest city in the United States, and the San Diego Chargers have an option of doing so as well. The Oakland Raiders? They seem to be left behind a little bit, and can only make their move away from Norther California if the Chargers decline.
The big winner from the owners voting on the matter is Stan Kroenke, the owner of the Rams, who will now be the second person to take a team away from St. Louis. He won with 30 votes from the 32, making his plan to take the Rams from St. Louis to the site of the old Hollywood Park racetrack in Inglewood, California. The Chargers and Raiders wanted to build a stadium in Carson, but failed to convince the owners. Now the Rams, who seemed like the team who’ll be left out on the big move to Los Angeles a few months ago, are the only ones guaranteed on the deal.
The Chargers now have an option of joining in with the Rams, which might mean playing in the Los Angeles Coliseum until 2019. The city of San Diego is still hoping the Chargers, located about 120 miles south of Inglewood, remain in San Diego, but not if their intent is to eventually leave to Los Angeles. The Raiders? The city is having issues with bringing together a plan for a new stadium instead of the Raiders currently sharing one with the A’s, the only remaining combination stadium.
St. Louis had a plan going for a $1.1 billion stadium to replace the current one and force the Rams to stay, but both the league and Kroenke did everything in their power to ignore those attempts, riding the ticket of the St. Louis economy making it impossible to keep a team there and let it thrive in the long term. He didn’t say anything about how the failure to field a successful team for over a decade has hurt the support from the city.
This will be a return for the Rams to Los Angeles, leaving in 1994. This will be the second time St. Louis loses an NFL team, going back to 1988, when the Cardinals moved to Arizona. The Rams now have to wait at least a year until they can negotiate naming rights on the new stadium, unless they reach some sort of deal with the second team before then. Kroenke will have to pay $550 million for the relocation, probably paying it in one lump. The Chargers? They’re going to sit on their decision for a while. The Raiders now have to try and see where the city finds the money to build a new stadium.