Nick Schwartz, USA Today:
St. Louis Rams owner Stan Kroenke is planning to build a stadium in Inglewood, California, and though fans in St. Louis are rallying to keep their team, NFL owners are “optimistic” that at least one NFL franchise will be in Los Angeles by 2016. The San Diego Chargers and Oakland Raiders have also proposed a move to L.A., and the NFL is expected to decide the fates of the three teams before the Super Bowl.
The Rams moved to St. Louis from Los Angeles before the 1995 season, and have played in Missouri for two decades. Fox broadcaster Joe Buck, who grew up in St. Louis, tweeted Tuesday that he believes taking the Rams out of St. Louis would have a grave impact on the city and called the idea a joke.
BTW, no support?in 2011 finished a stretch of 15-65. Let that sink in 15-65.11 straight non winning seasons. That's asking a lot of fans.— Joe Buck (@Buck) August 25, 2015
Suck the life out of a team, run it down, raise prices, then say it isn't supported and leave. Great example for the NFL to celebrate JOKE!— Joe Buck (@Buck) August 25, 2015
Money talks. Stan Kroenke has planned a nearly $2 billion stadium in Inglewood, Calif. St. Louis has countered with its own offer of a nearly $1 billion stadium on the north riverfront. With a net worth of $6.3 billion, Stan Kroenke has a way in dictating policy to those he does business with. His wife, Ann Walton Kroenke, has $5 billion to work with.
Joe Buck's Downtown restaurant would be affected by the St. Louis Rams moving west to Los Angeles. Joe is speaking for the city of St.Louis who have been jerked around by Stan Kroenke. The city of St. Louis took the threat by Kroenke of moving seriously. Initially Kroenke wanted the city to put $660 million for renovations to Edward Jones Dome. St. Louis went further with a $1 billion investment.
The city of St. Louis was without an NFL following the 1987 season. The St. Louis Cardinals moved to Arizona under the notoriously cheap owner, Bill Bidwill. The Cardinals advanced to the playoffs just three times (1974, 1975 & 1982), never hosting or winning in any appearance in their 28 years in St. Louis. The overall mediocrity of the Cardinals, combined with an old stadium, caused game attendance to dwindle and only 29, 623 attended the final game.
History has a way of repeating itself. St. Louis has had two mediocre owners. They might have had a third one if Bob Kraft didn't step in and keep the New England Patriots in Foxboro. James Busch Orthwein, the Patriots' owner from 1992-1994, played an important role in the Rams’ move to St. Louis by donating his 65 percent ownership share of the stadium rights to FANS Inc., the nonprofit group that persuaded the team to move.
The NFL owners plan to have all the answers to the Los Angeles stadium situation settled by Super Bowl 50.
Roman numerals will be taking a one-year break from the Super Bowl. Due to concerns over using a sole “L” for the 50th Super Bowl logo, the 2016 NFL championship will be known as Super Bowl 50. The league has used a Roman numeral to denote every title game since Super Bowl V.
Here is hoping that Stan Kroenke is stuck in St. Louis.
Paul Murphy is a freelance writer from New Hampshire. .
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