Simply put, no.
Millions of NFL fans in LA did gay gasps when they read Sam Farmer’s story yesterday. The Rams owner bought a 60-acre parking lot at Hollywood Park!
But the last several paragraphs of the article highlight why the Rams coming back is still unlikely.
In the post-9/11 era, there is a potential Federal Aviation Administration issue with building a stadium at or near Hollywood Park, which sits in the flight path of Los Angeles International Airport. Al Davis, then owner of the L.A. Raiders, got a Hollywood Park proposal approved in the 1990s, but the world was a different place then.
There probably would be a slew of other environmental challenges to building a stadium there — among them traffic and parking issues — particularly next to a large Hollywood Park Tomorrow development.
Already, there are two competing NFL stadium proposals in the Los Angeles area, one next to Staples Center, and another in the City of Industry. Both almost certainly would exert as much political and public pressure as possible to derail a third option.
Finally, a relocation would require a three-quarters majority vote of the league’s 32 teams. The fact that the Rams already left this market would be a strike against them. What’s more, a team filling the L.A. market would be a detriment to getting stadium deals done in San Diego and Oakland because it would deprive those teams of leverage in their home cities. A coalition of at least nine NFL owners could block any such move.
Football fans in LA need to stop playing games with themselves. I remember when the Seattle Seahawks were supposed to move to Anaheim back in 1996. In fact they had already moved their team operations to Anaheim, but a last minute injunction stopped them in their tracks.
Then, to add insult to this big hot stinking pile of shit, the NFL awarded an expansion team to LA in 1999. But no one could decide on where to put the team or who would own it, so the NFL later in the year gave the team to Houston.
At that point I took the hint. I stopped the mental retardation and made a vow not to get my hopes up until I see a shovel hit the ground with my own eyes. My own ojos.
Proposals have come and gone. Farmers Field in Downtown LA. LA Stadium in the City of Industry. I’ve talked to the people heading those proposals one-on-one, and none of them have convinced me the NFL was coming anytime soon.
In fact, I was told by one of the people off the record that we will see the NFL in Los Angeles by 2014. Cue the crickets.
The NFL loves that LA has no team. They can use the city as leverage for all of the other teams to bully other cities to hand out oodles of taxpayer money for new shiny stadiums. In fact Stan Kroenke, owner of the Rams, also owns land in London where he can further leverage the city of St. Louis to get anything he wants. Gotta love capitalism, right? And at last check, Jacksonville, San Diego and St. Louis still have stadium “issues”.
Fun fact: Let’s also ignore the fact that the Rams originally played in Cleveland from 1936 to 1945. It just proves that Cleveland was a shithole forcing athletes to flee going back to 1945.