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After arbitration, St. Louis has a big decision to make

Edward Jones Dome Getty Images

Though Friday’s news that the St. Louis Convention and Visitors Commission has rejected the Rams’ proposal for the upgrading of the Edward Jones Dome caused many to believe that the proverbial line in the sand for relocation had been drawn, the truth is that the expected rejection of a $700 million request represents the next step in an orchestrated process that may, or may not, send the Rams packing.

As mentioned in Saturday’s one-liners, negotiations will continue in advance of the June 15 submission of the case to arbitration.  Matthew Hathaway of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch explains the limited steps that will remain once the arbitration process commences.

Initially, the two sides will haggle over the identity of the three arbitrators.  If they can’t agree on their own, they’ll take turns striking names from a list of 13 provided by the American Arbitration Association.  At least seven of the candidates must be retired judges who live neither in Missouri or California, where the Rams now reside and where they could move as soon as 2015.

Once selected, the arbitrators will be charged with crafting a final plan for bringing the stadium into the NFL’s first tier — or, in other words, among the top eight venues in the league.

After the arbitrators issue a decision, the Convention and Visitors Commission will have 60 days to make a decision of its own.  And the options will be simple:  accept the plan adopted by the arbitrators, or do nothing.

If the CVC does nothing, the Rams can terminate the lease and leave after the 2014 season.  Alternatively, the Rams and the CVC may agree to extend the relationship on a year-to-year basis — an indefinite and uncertain approach that won’t be good for anybody.

Still, any desire by the Rams to relocate ultimately can be blocked, if the CVC chooses to accept the outcome of arbitration.  But that outcome will entail the dome entering the short list of elite stadiums, which means that either way the Rams will win.

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17 Responses to “After arbitration, St. Louis has a big decision to make”
  1. SparkyGump says: Jun 2, 2012 6:07 PM

    It’s time for cities and states to put their collective feet down and tell the NFL to go scratch. Go ahead and let them leave. They have to play somewhere. We’ve had enough of this glorified corporate welfare. If they want new stadiums, they can pay for them out of their own pockets. Pockets that have a lot more cash in them than ours.

  2. rajbais says: Jun 2, 2012 6:15 PM

    Let them walk!!! Let them walk!!!
    Let them walk!!! Let them walk!!!

  3. thingamajig says: Jun 2, 2012 6:25 PM

    Kinda sounds like Vikings 2.0

  4. ramdomhaus says: Jun 2, 2012 6:27 PM

    Rams are moving back to L.A.!! Yes!!
    After all, Stan Kroenke was born & raised in Missouri!
    And his real estate business is HQed in St. Louis!
    And the rest of his empire is in Denver!
    And he was a major player to get the NFL to St. Louis!
    And his mother, who he is very close with, goes to every Rams game!
    And Rodger Goodell voted St. Louis both times when expansions cities were decided upon in the early 90s!
    This TOTALLY points to an L.A. relocation!!! YEAHH!!

  5. emperorzero says: Jun 2, 2012 7:02 PM

    Only if Wal Mart had any money…

  6. billybatty says: Jun 2, 2012 7:09 PM

    ramdomhaus says: Jun 2, 2012 6:27 PM

    Rams are moving back to L.A.!! Yes!!
    After all, Stan Kroenke was born & raised in Missouri!
    And his real estate business is HQed in St. Louis!
    And the rest of his empire is in Denver!
    And he was a major player to get the NFL to St. Louis!
    And his mother, who he is very close with, goes to every Rams game!
    And Rodger Goodell voted St. Louis both times when expansions cities were decided upon in the early 90s!
    This TOTALLY points to an L.A. relocation!!! YEAHH!!

    —————————————-
    A little icing on this cake here:

    The rams receive ALL gate revenue, ALL vending revenue, pay no fees to play in the dome, other than general city taxes. Pretty sweet setup if you ask me. Oh yeah, stan is the sole owner, which would change under these “too good to be true” L A plans.

  7. kane337 says: Jun 2, 2012 7:27 PM

    Stan owns a home in Malibu, California and just recently tried to buy the Dodgers.

  8. superbowlseahawks says: Jun 2, 2012 8:11 PM

    The 2 and only fans of the Rams are delusional. That team will be in LA as soon as they get a chance. Nobody in the NFC West likes traveling to that armpit of a city. No fans = No revenue.

  9. tonyromoisterrible says: Jun 2, 2012 8:38 PM

    Hit Andy Taylor up for the naming rights. Maybe he can finally give some of the billions he has to something other than his family’s bank account. Enterprise-rent-a-car dome would be a brilliant marketing scheme for that POS. then I hope Andy finally goes to jail for mistreating his employees.

    HTTR!!!!!

  10. billybatty says: Jun 2, 2012 9:02 PM

    uperbowlseahawks says: Jun 2, 2012 8:11 PM

    The 2 and only fans of the Rams are delusional. That team will be in LA as soon as they get a chance. Nobody in the NFC West likes traveling to that armpit of a city. No fans = No revenue.

    ———————————————-
    Will be funny to see what happens to your failure of a team once P. Allen cashes out. BTW, interesting choice of screen names, given the team has failed any attempt at winning a super bowl.

  11. thermalito says: Jun 2, 2012 9:26 PM

    There is no guarantee the Arbitratrator will lower the Rams demands at all, or even if they do that it will be anything significant. Either way if St. Louis wants to keep the Rams its going to cost them close to a billion dollars. No way the City of St. Louis comes up with that much. Rams are going back to LA where they belong.

  12. thermalito says: Jun 2, 2012 9:30 PM

    I see St. Losers are whining about that sweet lease deal Stan has at the dome. ha ha. Its a sweet lease deal because the place is a dump.

  13. jbcommonsense says: Jun 2, 2012 10:15 PM

    @Ramdomhaus and billybatty, your pts are dead on and indicate that Kroenke will stay in his native Missouri stomping grounds. The big issue will be how Kroenke and CVC split the costs of creating a 1st tier stadium.

  14. thermalito says: Jun 2, 2012 10:29 PM

    @jbcommonsense: Stan Kroenke does not live in St. Louis any longer and if you think he will remain in the league’s 30th ranked revenue market because he has some sort of affinity for Missouri you are delusional. Split the costs? LOL. Keep dreaming dude. According to the terms of the lease Kroenke is not obligated to contribute one dime towards stadium upgrades. Stan Kroenke is business partners with AEG and wants to turn the Rams into one of the league’s elite franchises. There is not a single financial advantage to remaining in a failed football market like St. Louis. The Rams are gone back to LA after this arbitration charade is finished.

  15. thermalito says: Jun 3, 2012 5:44 AM

    The Rams belong in Los Angeles, but regardless if St. Louis wants to keep the team the Edward Jones Dump (currently ranked as one of the top 3 worst facilities in the league) will have to be as good or better than these 8 stadiums:

    1. Cowboys Stadium – cost: $1.2 billion

    2. MetLife Stadium (Jets and Giants) – cost: $1.6 billion

    3. New Vikings Stadium-cost: $1 billion

    4. New 49ers stadium-cost:$1 billion

    5. Lucas Oil Stadium (Colts)-cost:$676 million (nearly $800 million after cost over-runs)

    6. Lincoln Financial Field (Eagles)-cost: $600 million

    7. Century Link Field (Seahawks)-cost: $500 million

    8. University of Phoenix Stadium (Cardinals)-cost: $455 million

    Keep in mind the Eagles, Seahawks and Cardinals stadiums if built today would all cost around a billion dollars. The Bears recently renovated Soldier Field to top-tier stadium status and it cost the City $714 million. The Patriots, Bengals and Broncos all also currently have top tier stadiums currently light years better than the Edward Jones dome.

  16. nflinla says: Jun 3, 2012 1:22 PM

    Yea and Walter O’Malley was a New York man, born and raised and moved the Dodgers to LA. The analogy that Stan is from Missouri means nothing.

  17. cad700 says: Jun 3, 2012 11:11 PM

    If you think where Kroenke is from has anything to do with his business decisions concerning his sports franchises, you don’t know business! One of the reasons he pulled out of the deal to buy the Dodgers was because he couldn’t own an NFL and MLB franchise in the same city.

    I’m sure his mom wouldn’t mind 77 degree temps in November and December, the beaches, Beverly Hills shopping and all of the other things that Southern California offers.

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