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Chargers scramble to defuse perception of a possible move to L.A.

With two potentially viable stadium projects in L.A. (all the better to leverage one against the other with), the Chargers have found themselves at the top of the Relocation Speculation list.

And for good reason.  The Chargers can’t get no satisfaction when it comes to getting a new stadium in San Diego and, more recently, word has emerged that a chunk of the team is for sale.

Though the official line is that the transaction would be made for estate planning purposes, a valid concern with the so-called “death tax” returning in 2011, the circumstances are creating circumstantial evidence (which is why they call it “circumstantial evidence”) of a possible move.

We are concerned,” said Chargers special counsel Mark Fabiani, according to Nick Canepa of the San Diego Union-Tribune.  “There’s been a confluence, a merging of several different stories, and we’re going to have to work hard to see that people know the real facts.”

Fabiani says there’s no connection between the sale and a possible move to L.A.  Unless, of course, there is.

“Selling a minor share has absolutely nothing to do with the location of this football team or a new stadium,” Fabiani said, per Canepa.  “They’re two entirely different things, but AEG is promoting a new downtown stadium in L.A., and we understand people are going to merge the stories.”

And Fabiani recognizes that the stories could merge.

“If AEG buys a piece of this team, then people have a right to be concerned,” Fabiani said.  “But it’s totally hypothetical at this point.  Goldman Sachs has talked to people all over the country, all over the world, not just in L.A.  It’s all rumors.”

Frankly, we’re confused by Fabiani’s position that the rumors are unwelcome.  The Chargers haven’t been able to get a new stadium by not applying leverage.  If the circumstances naturally apply leverage, the folks in San Diego may decide to take the situation seriously.

Indeed, as our pal Brooks of SportsByBrooks recently pointed out, San Diego officials recently arranged for a spending cap on downtown development to be lifted, which removes one of the various hurdles to building a new home for the Chargers, in their current home.

Then again, maybe the Chargers want to apply leverage without overtly creating the impression that they’re applying leverage.  Indeed, all the team has to say is that they won’t sell all or part of the team to AEG.  Until that happens, an L.A. move is in play.

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22 Responses to “Chargers scramble to defuse perception of a possible move to L.A.”
  1. david7590 says: Nov 17, 2010 11:17 AM

    Why would a team want to play in LA? Its obviously not a football town. To who ever moves there, enjoy the blackouts.

  2. joetoronto says: Nov 17, 2010 11:19 AM

    They’re gone, LA Chargers.

  3. mnviking says: Nov 17, 2010 11:20 AM

    For any team to pick up and leave will just be devasting for the fans.
    I do not like seeing moves.
    I am not sure who will be the best fit, I just hope its NOT the Vikings, there is such a great history and rivaly in the North.

  4. andyprough says: Nov 17, 2010 11:43 AM

    How much difference is there really between San Diego and LA? It’s just one long traffic jam.

  5. packerrube13 says: Nov 17, 2010 11:43 AM

    The folks affiliated with the Chargers, like fans and team personnel, shouldn’t worry about a move to LA. The Vikings already have it locked up. The Rams will then swap places with the Vikings and come to the NFC North and the Vikes will join the 49ers, Seahawks, and Cardinals to form the worst divison in all of competitive sports. You heard it here first.

    The seats at the new LA stadium are purple, look it up.

    PFT Realist/Prognisticator

  6. Rosenthals Speling Instrukter says: Nov 17, 2010 11:45 AM

    I hope they stay in SD. I haven’t missed a Charger home game since 2000. What will I do on Sundays with no Charger games?

    Go to the beach that is filled with hot women?



    Well I guess LA Chargers doesn’t sound too bad.

  7. R8RBOB says: Nov 17, 2010 11:50 AM

    Los Angeles, you can have the Chargers but keep your dirty hands off the RAIDERS. The 49ers are available as a backup.

  8. sdw2001 says: Nov 17, 2010 11:58 AM

    I really doubt the Vikes are moving to LA. The Chargers…well, that may be another thing.

  9. edenprairiemn says: Nov 17, 2010 12:23 PM

    This is a terrible idea. I am sick of the Commisioner and the league making all these changes! Does anyone there respect tradition?
    Moving to an 18 game schedule should be enough. Now they want to make the field wider and have padding on the outside of player helmets. And I don’t mind having teams play a game or two out of the U.S. (like Canada or England) but to have an foreign expansion team is rediculous!!!!!!!!!
    This is Brett Favre’s last year in the NFL and it might be my last year watching the NFL. If they make too many changes, I am going to lose interest and I have been watching football since I was 7!

  10. ercin13 says: Nov 17, 2010 12:25 PM

    talk to us in 5 years when there might be a real possibility of a team moving to l.a..

  11. mikebyrne1502 says: Nov 17, 2010 12:47 PM

    And the story continues, all I know is NO ONE has started building yet, everything at this point is hypothetical, and everything is a rumor in L.A. so no one really knows if any team is going there. Until someone puts “..a shovel in the ground” Mark Fabiani. Everything is Speculation>

  12. ejtowne says: Nov 17, 2010 1:04 PM

    It wouldn’t be that far of a move. Wouldn’t lose much of their fanbase. LosAngeles Chargers… Sounds pretty good.

  13. Keyser Söze says: Nov 17, 2010 1:59 PM

    Anonymous sources are saying that Al Davis is a prospective buyer. Oh the intrigue…

  14. raiders4life says: Nov 17, 2010 2:31 PM

    Ever since 1994 I’ve been hearing the NFL is coming back to LA. After 16 years, I’ll believe when I see it.

  15. mekono says: Nov 17, 2010 2:31 PM

    Al Davis, are you alive or are you enjoying a Weekend at Bernie’s?

    For those fans in San Diego concerned about losing the Chargers, build a new stadium and this goes away right away. It has only been discussed for the last 20 -30 years, take your time.

    For those that say Los Angeles does not desereve a team I ask why? We did not support Al in the Coliseum. He took off for deades of crap back in oakland. We screwed Georgia Frontiere when she allowed the Rams to become a joke.

    We have waited 20 years. Send us the Chargers, Vikings, Jags, or an expansion team.

  16. 7pints says: Nov 17, 2010 2:39 PM

    They won’t sell out there either.

  17. doodlesmack says: Nov 17, 2010 2:48 PM

    Funny how it is mainly the Green Bay FudgePacker fans that are the ones constantly talking about the Vikings moving to LA.

    Guess they are scared……..

  18. tombrookshire says: Nov 17, 2010 2:53 PM

    They’ll be denying all the way up until the moving vans slip out of San Diego at 3AM a la Cleveland Ravens.

  19. mnviking says: Nov 17, 2010 3:05 PM


    Does your statement make any sense? NO it doesn’t. Why would two teams move instead of one?

    I am assuming your comment was just for fun… I guess you got me!

  20. elcraphead says: Nov 17, 2010 3:17 PM

    Once again.

    The team from the AFC To move to Los Angeles will be the Raiders.

    Al Davis owns the rights.

    Lease is up in 2013.

    L.A. Stadium will be ready in 2014-2015.

    Raiders have a strong and loyal fanbase in Los Angeles that out numbers any other AFC Team expecially the Chargers.

    Los Angeles Raiders 2015

  21. pftuser says: Nov 17, 2010 3:47 PM

    @ packerrube13:

    ‘…the worst division in all of professional sports’ has been to the superbowl 4 times since 2000.

    The NFCN once. I am a Packer fan, and it appears to me, that there’s more than once division worse than the NFCW.

    Appearances in the Superbowl since 2000 (by div):

    NFCW 4
    AFCE 4
    NFCS 3
    NFCE 3
    AFCS 3
    AFCN 3
    NFCN 1
    AFCW 1

  22. natelan says: Nov 22, 2010 7:23 PM

    If the Spanos family REALLY wants to avoid the estate tax, why don’t they all just die before the year ends?

    That would be just fine for all of us Chargers fans.

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