Chargers, Rams, Raiders to file L.A. relocation papers; everybody act surprised!

San Diego Chargers stadium czar Mark Fabiani says the team plans to file relocation papers for Los Angeles with the NFL, as do the owners of the St. Louis Rams and Oakland Raiders:

“If everything is moving ahead, obviously we’re not going to be standing on the sidelines and watching everything go by,” Fabiani told Dan Sileo on the Mighty 1090 AM. “We’ve got to stay in the game to protect the franchise.”

I mean, of course they are: Filing relocation papers doesn’t commit anybody to actually moving to L.A., it just keeps your options open, or at least as open as the other NFL owners decide to allow them to be. Everything that’s been reported in every city in recent weeks about the L.A. relocation dance has been just a matter of creating leverage, and we can expect to see it continue as the next window for an NFL decision (roughly January-February) grows ever nearer, though the league still has the option to punt everything to 2017. I’d still put my money on that, frankly — there’s still a lot of shaking down of St. Louis, San Diego, and Oakland yet to be done — but I don’t expect anything to get much clearer before the last minute. Until then, we have announcements like this to fill column inches.

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13 comments on “Chargers, Rams, Raiders to file L.A. relocation papers; everybody act surprised!

  1. Though relocation may be the end game for one or maybe two of the three team, this has to be a doomsday scenario for the NFL. One team or maybe two will end up the loser(s) in the LA sweepstakes yet the winner not named the Rams may not be able to move to LA without help. Which is why the NFL may be looking for an out hence the town hall meeting with season ticket holders in the three cities. Why have town hall meetings if relocation is 100% certain?

  2. There is one thing that I haven’t seen discussed in the shake-down stories. How much could the NFL collect if it includes expansion teams in this dance? In other words, if two established teams move to L.A. the two teams have to pay relocation fees to the other 30 owners. How much extra could the full 32 owners pocket if the owners then replaced the two teams that moved with expansion teams in their former cities? Basically the Browns / Ravens model times 2.

    That makes way too much financial sense for the NFL owners not to have discussed it already.

  3. By the way, I also believe that nothing is going to happen until 2017, at the earliest. L.A. has waited this long, another year or two won’t make a difference to the NFL.

  4. Oh. My. God. I didn’t see that coming!

    Quick, San Diego, Oakland and St Louis, whip out your checkbooks! This must be stopped!

    (How was that?)

  5. Given what I experienced from living in Southern California, I believe having one NFL team is sufficient, and it should be the franchise with the greatest regional fan base. This being the case, the Rams should be the relocation choice of the league.

  6. @ALK – I follow this drama pretty closely, and I haven’t seen anything about expansion. For one thing, an additional two teams really complicates the league structure, which has a very clean structure of eight divisions of four teams each. Furthermore, with the LA-will-take-your-team threat gone after this round of relocations, the NFL needs to develop another location(s) to scare existing cities into update/replace their stadiums.

    But I’m sure they’ve thrown around the idea!

  7. “For one thing, an additional two teams really complicates the league structure,…”

    Two 17-team conferences, play everybody in your conference every year. Two conference winners play in the Super Bowl. It’s the “MLB pre-1969” approach!

  8. I live in Tampa Bay where there is no state income tax, cost of housing is reasonable, state/local sales tax is 7% and the current price of a gallon of gas is $1.89. Two weeks ago my wife and I visited San Diego, where the state income tax rate is 9.3% for middle income folks, the cost of housing is insanely high, state/local sales tax is 8% and the price of a gallon of gas is about $2.50. Not to mention that the hotel we stayed at charged $32 per day for our rental car. And not to mention that the tax rate on our hotel bill was 12.7% So I hope however this alleged franchise relocation works out, that Californians don’t incur one additional dime of taxation for an improved or new stadium in San Diego or for new stadium/stadia in the LA area.

  9. The only person with a “real plan” to build a new stadium is Stan Kroenke in Inglewood. As a matter of fact, he can start building in December. The Carson stadium is just a bunch of smoke and mirrors and everyone knows that. Neither Spanos or Davis have the money to finance a stadium, let alone one in LA where it’s gonna cost close to $2 billion.

    As far as St. Louis goes, Kroenke made an offer. CVC counter offered. Neither side was satisfied and agreed to arbitration to decide. THAT is all Kroenke needed to do in order to fulfill negotiations in good faith. After the arbitrator ruled in favor of Kroenke and the CVC refused to comply, THEY were the party acting in bad faith because THEY agreed to abide by the arbitrators decision. After the CVC’s refusal Kroenke was NO LONGER REQUIRED to negotiate with St Louis. PERIOD.

  10. There’s nothing to shakedown Oakland for. Trying to do that is like trying to rob a naked person? Even if they wanted to hand over anything (which they wouldn’t and don’t want to do), they don’t actually have anything to hand over.

  11. @DaveCA you are correct. Carson was that made-up girlfriend, the geek would tell the jocks about so they wouldn’t think he’s a virgin. Kroenke did not want to wait for the blessing of his fellow owners so he decided to not act but strike first and he had bolts of energy striking when he bought land in Inglewood. Carson was a creature of the Spanos family. They can’t built a stadium in either San Diego or LA on their own so they had to find their way into the conversation and stay so they created Carson and they convinced Mark Davis to play wingman. Do anyone believe 29 owners is going to Stan Kroenke, “sorry that you spent millions buying that property in Inglewood but we are doing to deny you relocating the Rams.”

  12. Dave and Rob,

    Do you have any links to back up the assertions. Because it seems like a few owners disagree with you

  13. BBTLAR cult members are so naive it’s kind of sad. Fred Roggin tells them a lot of lies and they’re so desperate they believe all of his nonsense. They’ve been pining over a team for 20 years, how pathetic.

    The Inglewood plan is a farce, there’s not enough room for the stadium and a dome in SoCal is just stupid. Kroenke’s announcement that he might maybe think about building a stadium helped him con Inglewood out of $100s of millions in tax rebates on HPLC’s condos, apartments, and business parks. The initiative also changed the zoning for the project and allows a Walmart to be built after the Inglewood residents spent a decade fighting against the Waltons. Where do you think Kroenke got his 60 acres? And there’s still no definitive proof that Stan purchased the land.

    The BBTLAR still don’t realize they’ve been had, it’s going to be hilarious to watch their reaction when the Carson stadium is approved for the Chargers and Raiders.

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