It’s no secret that billionaire Philip Anshultz and his Anchultz Entertainment Group want an NFL team to come to Los Angeles in the not-too-distant future.
AEG already has a stadium and naming rights lined up, but the proposed Farmers Field might never be realized if a team can’t be lured back to SoCal.
The good news (or bad news, depending on where you live) is that they’re getting more confident. AEG president Tim Leiweke named five specific teams the company has reached out to in an interview with the Orange County Register.
“St. Louis, Jacksonville, not extensively, certainly Oakland, San Diego, Minnesota are still in the mix,” Leiweke said listing the teams AEG has met with before adding: “We’re not packing any (moving) vans right now.”
You get the feeling this is significantly more legit than Doug Ford speak, so let’s quickly break down the handful of teams AEG is flirting with:
Jacksonville: The attendance numbers aren’t close to as bad as we all assume, but there’s little doubt that the franchise would make more money in corporation-heavy Los Angeles.
Minnesota: This is all about the stadium situation. The Vikes are pursuing a new venue, but the team, the league, the state and Ramsey County are having trouble agreeing on who will pay what. If the proposed stadium in Arden Hills falls through, the team could be in jeopardy of following the same path the Minneapolis Lakers blazed in 1959.
Oakland: The Raiders have the worst attendance figures in the league, they play in a fairly old stadium and Al Davis made the exact same move two decades ago. Need I say more?
St. Louis: Wouldn’t it be nostalgic if the Rams were to return to Los Angeles? This would obviously be the most ideal move in terms of regaining fans in the area, and the ownership situation in St. Louis is less than rock solid.
San Diego: This would be the most convenient move, simply because it would only require a 100-mile trek down I-5. And the Chargers’ stadium situation is brutal.
(Hat tip: Reservation for Six)