Third Time's the Charm: NFL Returning to Los Angeles?
For the past few years, there has been talk of bringing in or creating a new team in Los Angeles for the National Football League, but is it the right idea - especially in these economically strained times we live in?
Although the city of Los Angeles is bombarded with a plethora of sport teams from at least three of the four "major" sporting leagues (being the NBA, MLB and NHL,) it somehow doesn't include a professional football team among its other world famous sports teams.
That wasn't always the case. Los Angeles tried twice over the last six decades to claim a pro franchise, the first being with the Rams, which started in Ohio in 1936 until its move to the City of Angeles in 1946 and finally ending up in its current location when the franchise moved from L.A. to St. Louis prior to the 1995 season.
The second attempt in claiming a pro franchise for the city was with the Raiders, which had initially started in early 1960s Minneapolis then moved over to Oakland for 18 years until its disappointing move to L.A. for 12 years prompted the franchise to return back to its notorious roots in Oakland's Bay Area.
Both attempts failed miserably, leaving the city without a professional football franchise until the AFL, a semi-pro arena-styled football league, created an L.A. expansion team, called the Avengers, in 2000, which, as of the 2009 season, has shut-down its operations after the previous lockout season stopped the franchise's operations for over a year.
With all avenues halted to a dead end in the nation's second largest market, talk between investors about giving it another go in L.A. has surely been on the minds of all sports fans, not to mention the NFL.
The next best thing L.A. has in football is at the collegiate level in UCLA and USC, with the latter performing and delegating team matters almost exactly like professional teams go about their business.
Therefore, shouldn't the idea of having a professional football team enthrall any casual to diehard Los Angeles sports fan? Well, not exactly.
For the uneducated ones, who only think with their heart and not with their minds, having an L.A. based professional football team would seem like the best idea ever.
However, those who actually view the notion of having a pro football team from an economic standpoint can quickly foretell of the added burden to the city's economy.
Taxpayers will also see and understand this way of thinking when this "notion" will befall upon their subconscious sending them that elusive epiphany they always seek for, leading them to realize that, in the end, it will benefit the city more so to not have a professional football team as supposed to having one.
It's not so simple to have a professional team in a city. Remember, the NFL is big business. As are the NBA, MLB and NHL.
In order to host a team as their "home," the city needs to supply an available vendor (i.e. an arena or stadium), boast acres of land for patron parking and the necessary room to build and expand team facilities.
As of 2009, plans to have an NFL team in Southern California were almost thrown out the window when the only vendor available to host a team was the famous Coliseum, the host of the 1984 Los Angeles Olympic Games and regular season home field to the USC Trojans, until a group of investors decided to pitch the needed money to create a new stadium in the City of Industry.
To save you from all the boring aspects of how they plan to construct the stadium and its surrounding areas, what needs to be focused on is having it altogether.
This group of investors plans to place the team in the City of Industry, which ranges from 25 to 40 miles away from where the team gets it name - Los Angeles.
Hypothetically, if you would like to go to a mid-day Saturday game and you are located in Los Angeles, you would have to get out of your home approximately four hours before the pre-game show starts just so that you can make it through the freeway traffic, find parking and get settled in to your seat.
By the time the game finishes, which should take about three hours or so, and your on your way home, you'll get back around the late night time and have to go straight to bed to be ready for the next day.
Basically, your taking the whole day to see a game that you're probably not quite sure was worth the time or money to see in the first place.
The great thing about Staples Center in Downtown Los Angeles, (home to the NBA's Los Angeles Lakers and Clippers, the WNBA's Los Angeles Spark, the NBDL's Los Angeles D-Fenders, the recently defunct Los Angeles Avengers of the AFL and the home of the Los Angeles Kings of the NHL,) from which investors should look to as the model of success with housing pro teams, is that it's in L.A.
It only takes, at most, an hour or two to get to the Staples Center and the same time to get back, thus allowing the ticket holder to continue on with his/her day instead of solely investing their entire day to watch something that might not guarantee them the satisfaction they would usually be getting somewhere else that's relatively closer to home.
All I'm saying is that there has to be a line drawn out.
Either we fork up the additional costs to build the grounds for the new stadium and throw money, that we don't have (as seen by the state's more than $50 billion debt,) down the toilet but have the team in City of Los Angeles or we just cut our losses by not spending more and obviously not place the team 30 miles away from its team's namesake location.
Whatever will happen definitely won't be anytime soon. However, in the meantime, it should be the responsibility of L.A. citizens to learn more about what maybe in the future and how it can affect them. To do that, visit www.losangelesfootballstadium.com for more details on its overall plans and general economic information.