If you frequent JBB often enough then you know that I’m an L.A. Raiders fan. I’m a SoCal native that was fortunate enough to fall in love with football around the same time Al Davis brought the Raiders to Los Angeles. As heartbroken as I was to see the Silver and Black leave I knew they were going back to their rightful home so my support never waned.
In recent months it has become a popular topic to discuss the prospects of the Raiders returning to L.A. now that there are two bids in place to build stadiums. Of course that talk has recently increased now that AEG has its hands in the O.co Coliseum. With AEG fronting its own cash to construct a football stadium in the heart of Downtown L.A. it’s only natural to suspect that the Raiders making the move again is a very real possibility.
Even Mark Davis himself has fanned the flames by saying “Los Angeles is a possibility” given the Raiders’ desire to move into a new stadium.
As much as I’d love to see my Silver and Black back in L.A. even I know the odds of that are long.
First and foremost Mark Davis has said he’s not selling which means the Raiders will remain in the Davis family for decades barring sad set of circumstances. AEG is demanding a stake in any franchise that plays in their Downtown football complex. So you do the math on that.
Beyond the ownership issues, Roger Goodell himself has said he’d prefer not to relocate any NFL franchises instead hoping to expand the league. That would likely tie into the greedy desire of the owners to move to an 18-game season. In case last season’s lockout has been wiped from your memory the players shot that idea down so fast that it never even made it into one of the proposed CBAs drafted by the owners. As of now the 18-game schedule has been “tabled” to be discussed at a later date.
That leaves the Raiders in Oakland, where they belong, and my beloved City of Angels with potentially two empty football stadiums.
No matter the politics involved, getting football back to L.A. requires more than a great sports complex. It’s a start but it’s not going create enough momentum on its own to drag teams to the L.A. market. In case you haven’t noticed even teams like the Jacksonville Jaguars and all their tarp-covered seats are turning a nice profit thanks to the NFL’s amazing revenue sharing program.
There really isn’t a lot of incentive for an owner to up root and move. Not to mention it’s not like L.A. is starved for another pro team. Quiet as kept L.A. is one of the great sports cities you’ll find in and California is perhaps the best state for sports in the entire country. Just look at how many pro teams are profitable in L.A. and statewide. With or without pro football Los Angeles and California as a whole has gotten along just fine. So too has the NFL. So if it ain’t broke…