ESPN’s Jim Trotter, a former Union-Tribune beat writer on the Chargers, livened up the Twitter universe Thursday with two bearish forecasts about the future of the Chargers and Raiders in their respective cities.
Tweet No. 1: “I’ve never been more pessimistic about Chargers staying in SD. Based on all I’m hearing I’d be SHOCKED if team isn’t in LA next year.”
Tweet No. 2: “Barring unanticipated miracle, I expect Chargers and Raiders to announce in January their plans to relocate – Chargers to LA, Raiders to LV.”
That’s just Trotter’s opinion, really — dare I say hot take? — which is fine enough. What’s not fine is news outlet after news outlet acting like this is actual, you know, news:
NFL insider sees Chargers, Raiders on move in 2017 (San Diego Union-Tribune)
Chargers Reportedly Almost Guaranteed To Move To L.A. In 2017 (LAist)
It reportedly will take a ‘miracle’ to keep the Chargers in San Diego (Washington Post)
What we have here is still a rumor — one that could be based on what actual NFL insiders are thinking, or on what actual NFL insiders want you to think, or on what a few people around the league are talking to a couple of well-connected sportswriters about over beers. It’s certainly possible that Dean Spanos will announce a move to L.A. next month, but it’s also possible that he’ll ask for more time to keep negotiating with Rams owner Stan Kroenke and/or the city of San Diego — or even that he’ll decide the L.A. deal is too second-fiddly for his blood and reject it entirely, though that seems less likely because why not just ask for an extension then to keep his options open? But trying to guess based on what some unknown “league sources” say is going to be about as accurate as a dart board — you’d probably do just as well selling prediction shares in the Chargers leaving or staying in San Diego, and going with the wisdom of the crowd.