From our brethren at HardballTalk (they seem like nice guys, but for their obsession with baseball) comes an update regarding the effort of Rams owner Stan Kroenke to purchase the L.A. Dodgers. He has made it past the first cut in the process, unlike the group led by Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban.
Previously, it hadn’t been confirmed that Kroenke had even made a bid.
The development arises at a time when tensions have escalated between Kroenke’s Rams and the St. Louis Convention and Visitors Commission, which manages the Edward Jones Dome. With negotiations on a possible extension of a lease that the Rams can escape after 2014 absent significant upgrades to the stadium set to begin Wednesday, the CVC has claimed that the Rams can’t proceed with plans to play one regular-season home game in London in each of the next three years.
The Rams have responded by trying to argue that St. Louis would benefit from losing 12.5 percent of the city’s annual allotment of regular-season NFL games.
If Kroenke succeeds in his effort to buy the Dodgers, it would be interpreted by some (or by many) as a precursor to a return of the Rams to Los Angeles. And if another NFL team ends up going to L.A., it would create a real question under the league’s cross-ownership rules, which prohibit NFL owners from owning sports franchises in markets occupied by other NFL teams.
The league apparently isn’t interested in wading into that particular tar pit until it has to. “We have not been presented with any proposal to evaluate,” NFL spokesman Greg Aiello recently told PFT regarding the possibility of Kroenke buying the Dodgers and a team other than the Rams relocating to Los Angeles. “Thus, we will refrain from speculating.”
Refraining from speculating is something we’ll never do. And it’s not a stretch at this point to speculate that things are going to get a lot more tense in St. Louis.