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Demoff is “amazed” by the “angst” in St. Louis

Edward Jones Dome Getty Images

The Rams could be only three seasons away from having the ability to break their lease at the Edward Jones Dome and return to L.A.  Or anywhere else.

And so the current contractual dance between St. Louis and its football team, which is unfolding with the Rams donning their best poker face and necessarily displaying ambivalence to the fan base, is creating concern among the folks who want the team to stick around.

But COO Kevin Demoff doesn’t think fans should be worried.

“I’m amazed that we are years removed from even having a lease that goes year to year yet there is more angst in St. Louis than there is currently in San Diego or Oakland where the lease issues are more pressing,” Demoff said during Friday’s chat conducted via the team’s official website.  “There is more angst in St. Louis than there was in Minnesota and the Vikings lease was year to year.  The reasoning is simple — we’ve been burned before and now there is another lease issue to be resolved.  Fans don’t deserve to have this hanging over there [sic] head which is why we are excited about our proposal for a first tier facility which will give St. Louis a great NFL stadium.  Then we can finally put the lease/stadium/team moving discussions to bed and focus on improving this football team and building the winner that St. Louis deserves.”

Demoff’s explanation adroitly distorts the reality.  The Rams made a “proposal” for a first-tier upgrade that would cost $700 million without committing a penny toward paying for it, and the Convention and Visitors Commission wisely rejected it.  Eventually, three arbitrators will fashion a plan for getting the Edward Jones Dome into the top eight facilities in the league.  And if the CVC opts not to proceed, the Rams will have the ability to leave after the 2014 season.

Against those basic facts, the Rams aren’t saying that they’re staying.  Instead, the team (through Demoff) has reacted to the concern by explaining that the fans shouldn’t be concerned.

But they should be.  Given the ongoing absence of a clear sense that the Rams are committed to staying, there’s no reason they shouldn’t be.

Demoff’s comments aren’t designed to alleviate those concerns.  They’re intended to help lay the foundation for placing blame on St. Louis if the Rams end up leaving.  Which in turn puts more pressure on St. Louis to give the Rams their first-tier stadium.

The Rams, put simply, are driving a hard bargain.  Taking real steps to make the fans not worry about the team leaving makes it impossible to drive the hardest bargain possible.

And that’s fine.  But the Rams shouldn’t act surprised that the fans are worried when the Rams have given them zero reasons not to.

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43 Responses to “Demoff is “amazed” by the “angst” in St. Louis”
  1. jerrysandusky1 says: Jun 9, 2012 9:57 PM

    Are you sure he wasn’t “perplexed” or “flabbergasted”?

  2. steelernationisthepinnacleofexistenceyouarenothing says: Jun 9, 2012 10:01 PM

    You haven’t had a winning season since 2003! A lot to be anxious about.

  3. greasybeerfart says: Jun 9, 2012 10:04 PM

    I hope the Rams stay in St. Louis. As a Niners fan, I love taking the short trip to St. Louis to watch the Niners beat the Rams in person.

  4. thekingdave says: Jun 9, 2012 10:10 PM

    Must be pretty cool to be Kevin Demoff. Cash checks to be a professional liar. Well played sir.

  5. roastmeforbeingacardsfan says: Jun 9, 2012 10:11 PM

    Too bad “Demoff is amazed.” will never cacth on.

  6. ksm31311 says: Jun 9, 2012 10:17 PM

    Queue the “Tiki is flabbergasted and Drew Brees wants and explanation comments”…

  7. illiniftw says: Jun 9, 2012 10:19 PM

    Does he also know the fans think the EJD is fine as is especially if the upgrade raises ticket prices or taxes?

  8. canetic says: Jun 9, 2012 10:45 PM

    They should move to Jacksonville. That city is big enough for two teams.

  9. bigguy54 says: Jun 9, 2012 10:50 PM

    Rams are going back to LA and the Jags will be in St Louis. Not sure why any team would wan to go there, but the Jags new Owner does.

    Plus doesn’t a team have to have fans to have them worry about leaving? Maybe they can slow clap it out.

  10. gmsalpha says: Jun 9, 2012 10:53 PM

    Saint Louis lost the Cardinals. The fan base knows that losing a team is a real possibility as it has happened before.

    Not only that, but the team they may lose is not threatening a move to Boise or San Antonio or Hartford. They would be moving to Los Angeles. And not only moving to L.A, but moving BACK to L.A.

    Saint Louisians should be scared. And shame on the ownership for pulling something like this.

  11. bigbadal21 says: Jun 9, 2012 10:53 PM

    Am I the only one who read that the Rams are not currently focused on improving their team and building a winner?

  12. jimbo75025 says: Jun 9, 2012 10:59 PM

    I am sure the average fan could care less about the stadium being in the top 25% and would be perfectly happy sitting in the current under 20 year old stadium should the Rams field a quality team.

    Basically telling the fans you want a new stadium for all intents and purposes or you may move does tend to cause some angst especially in a city that has been burned before. I also am sure the EJD is not even close to paid off yet-even in its current configuration.

  13. candyman4881 says: Jun 9, 2012 11:02 PM

    igbadal21 says:Jun 9, 2012 10:53 PM

    Am I the only one who read that the Rams are not currently focused on improving their team and building a winner?
    ——————————-
    You do realize that Kroenke hired Jeff Fisher as one of the highest paid coaches in the league this year AND has spent up to the cap for now the third season in a row he has been the majority owner, right? I guess facts dont support others twisted opinions…

  14. brobokil says: Jun 9, 2012 11:07 PM

    On the bright side of all this nonesense, I learned today that there is a word called “adroitly”.

    Also, this Demoff guy shouldn’t be quoting the Vikings situation AT ALL. There is not one similarity.

    Probably a bad idea though for him to do so considering he expects the city to pay $700, and it took SEVERAL years to get Minnesota to pay $500 – WITH the team paying the other $500.

    You’re an idiot Demoff.
    Don’t fret St Louis, Goodell won’t allow your team to move. Best of luck to you though – seeing a place get its team torn from it is something I wouldn’t wish on anyone.

    Sincerely – One Happy Vikings Fan.

  15. brobokil says: Jun 9, 2012 11:11 PM

    bigbadal21 says:Jun 9, 2012 10:53 PM

    Am I the only one who read that the Rams are not currently focused on improving their team and building a winner?

    ——————————————————-

    “Then we can finally put the lease/stadium/team moving discussions to bed and focus on improving this football team and building the winner that St. Louis deserves.”

    lol bigbad, no, you were close. They just don’t intend to improve their team UNTIL they get their new stadium.

  16. billybatty says: Jun 9, 2012 11:17 PM

    Contrary to what most pft posters think, the “angst” could be because the fans do care about keeping the team in St Louis, however, with Wil E. Kroenke holding an anvil over the city’s head, it’s hard to give support for a below average product that is on the field.

  17. mac3333 says: Jun 9, 2012 11:40 PM

    Rams back to LA makes sense.

  18. noozehound says: Jun 9, 2012 11:58 PM

    I feel bad for St. Louis fans. But after going through the MN stadium nightmare, I just can’t bare to read up on another city’s stadium woes. I hope they get this mess figured out, until then… I’m tapping out.

  19. matthewcarlson1 says: Jun 10, 2012 12:01 AM

    ksm31311 says:
    Jun 9, 2012 10:17 PM
    Queue the “Tiki is flabbergasted and Drew Brees wants and explanation comments”…

    ———————————

    Shut up.

  20. robf2010 says: Jun 10, 2012 12:17 AM

    “But the Rams shouldn’t act surprised”

    They have to “act” surprised. It’s impossible to be surprised. Threats are part of their game plan. Not sure who the maestro is here. Is it the NFL or each franchise? When they hear a note out of place by a stadium committee, they can just wave their wand and the fans will sing their song for them.

  21. dmcgrann says: Jun 10, 2012 12:18 AM

    canetic said on Jun 9, 2012 10:45 PM:

    They should move to Jacksonville. That city is big enough for two teams.
    _______________________________

    Heck, maybe Jacksonville could move to St. Louis. Then each team could flip a coin to decide which one would be the equivalent of the old baseball St. Louis Cardinals and which one would be the St. Louis Browns circa 1950 or so.

    Sounds like the Rams should get the old Browns spot as they’re already sending a midget up to bat.

    And “Edward Jones Dome”? Really? Around here, they send their financial advisers door-to-door like tin men.

  22. bleedinggreenngold says: Jun 10, 2012 12:23 AM

    Why don’t the Rams build a top tier franchise for their fans and the city before they feel entitled to a top eight stadium? And if I were an LA football fan, I’d prefer the Chargers or Raiders….

  23. archetypeobscure says: Jun 10, 2012 1:14 AM

    “Fans don’t deserve to have this hanging over there [sic] head..”

    Damn you English language.

  24. thermalito says: Jun 10, 2012 1:33 AM

    Notice despite all of Demoff’s “amazement”, he never actually comes out says the Rams will be playing in St. Louis in 2015 despite being asked the question directly several times. Sounds like he’s trying to make sure ticket sales don’t tank completely in what looks to be the Rams last season in St. Louis before they buy out their lease and move back to LA next year.

  25. savior72 says: Jun 10, 2012 1:48 AM

    That agreement was made with former Rams ownership. I say it’s now null and void.

  26. hauts81 says: Jun 10, 2012 2:02 AM

    Demoff is wrong. The Vikings lease in the Metrodome was not year-to-year until now as they get ready to build a new stadium.

  27. staffordsyear says: Jun 10, 2012 4:33 AM

    The cardinals own this city regardless if the rams leave or not..i hope they stay for the sake of the die hard rams fans,regardless i have been a lifelong cards fan and i know that team rules all.

  28. nationalmediacansuckit says: Jun 10, 2012 5:00 AM

    bigguy54 says:
    Jun 9, 2012 10:50 PM
    Rams are going back to LA and the Jags will be in St Louis. Not sure why any team would wan to go there, but the Jags new Owner does.

    Plus doesn’t a team have to have fans to have them worry about leaving? Maybe they can slow clap it out.
    ——————————————-

    So Khan is going to leave Jax where he avg 62k a game to move to a St Louis market once they jet to LA that have less fan support, less attendance and leasing issues. Riiiiiiight. So Khan wants to be to in St Loius? Please inform me as to where you read this information so I can be brought up to speed since Khan has stated over and over that “the Jaguars aren’t going anywhere”. This is his quote. Now show me where he states the Jags are moving to St Loius?. I’ll be waiting.

  29. playin2x says: Jun 10, 2012 8:35 AM

    The rams need to commit money for a stadium if they are actually “serious” about it … Why should the people of st Louis pay all the costs when this is a team that hasnt had a winning season in years

  30. dd393 says: Jun 10, 2012 8:58 AM

    St. Louis has always been a strong baseball town, with football being a distant second. Plus, they’re halfway between the Bears and the Chiefs. But the most important number in this equation is their woeful record. Back to LA?

  31. tinbender2000 says: Jun 10, 2012 9:01 AM

    Simply solution. The Rams buy EJD for fair market value and do the upgrades, or not, themselves.

  32. jonesjack says: Jun 10, 2012 9:24 AM

    Rams fans are amazed that Demoff is still employed.

  33. covercorner says: Jun 10, 2012 10:26 AM

    DeMoff is shocked and perplexed that Rams fans are mad that their team sucks.

  34. paperlions says: Jun 10, 2012 10:36 AM

    Football isn’t even 2nd to baseball in StL, hockey is.

  35. thermalito says: Jun 10, 2012 11:50 AM

    The Rams belong in Los Angeles anyway. As a 49er fan I really hope the Rams go back to LA so we can restore that great SF/LA rivalry we had before.

  36. NoHomeTeam says: Jun 10, 2012 1:37 PM

    brobokil says: ” . . . Don’t fret St Louis, Goodell won’t allow your team to move. Best of luck to you though – seeing a place get its team torn from it is something I wouldn’t wish on anyone . . . Sincerely – One Happy Vikings Fan.”

    By all means fret, St. Louis.
    Goodell doesn’t have the power to stop a move, even if he for some reason wanted to.

    This is a sequel to a movie Rams fans in Southern California have seen before.

  37. NoHomeTeam says: Jun 10, 2012 1:40 PM

    savior72 says: “That agreement was made with former Rams ownership. I say it’s now null and void.”

    Just like your mortgage became “null and void” when CitiBank bought it from HomeLoansInc, right?

  38. NoHomeTeam says: Jun 10, 2012 1:49 PM

    bleedinggreenngold says: “Why don’t the Rams build a top tier franchise for their fans and the city before they feel entitled to a top eight stadium? And if I were an LA football fan, I’d prefer the Chargers or Raiders….”

    While I agree in spirit with your first statement, the second only serves to highlight the fact that you are not an L.A. football fan.

    The small, disproportionally-visible Raider contingent aside, football fans here don’t want them back.

    And we’ve never wanted the Chargers as “our” team. I’ve said it again and again: when we want to see the Chargers, we’ll drive down and make a weekend of it in San Diego.

    I believe there is still an emotional “ownership” of the Rams here. It took a severe beating during the Frontiere years, especially when the team won the big one for another city, but it’s still present. Look for it to grow with each development that indicates we might get the Rams back.

  39. kameleono says: Jun 10, 2012 1:59 PM

    I live in Missouri. 95% of Lambs fans were Chiefs fans who jumped ship when the Lambs got good. If they move the team most of those “fans” won’t even realize it or care.

  40. harleyforme says: Jun 10, 2012 9:44 PM

    Rams are going back to LA and the Jags will be in St Louis. Not sure why any team would wan to go there, but the Jags new Owner does.

    Plus doesn’t a team have to have fans to have them worry about leaving? Maybe they can slow clap it out.
    ——————————————-

    So Khan is going to leave Jax where he avg 62k a game to move to a St Louis market once they jet to LA that have less fan support, less attendance and leasing issues. Riiiiiiight. So Khan wants to be to in St Loius? Please inform me as to where you read this information so I can be brought up to speed since Khan has stated over and over that “the Jaguars aren’t going anywhere”. This is his quote. Now show me where he states the Jags are moving to St Loius?. I’ll be waiting.

    ———————————————
    First, I wish someone would point out where the Rams have ever mentioned moving in general and moving to LA in particular? So Kroenke waited 15 years to become the sole owner just so he could move to LA where they will accept no less than 30% ownership of the team in order to rent it for 10 days a year? HE stipulated that the only way he would enter into ownership of the Rams was that they HAD to move to St. Louis. He led the charge for expansion into St. Louis before that. He also was born and raised here (yes, he has a house in California, and Denver and Montana and Canada and probably many more).
    Second, I’ve been to games at Jacksonville before; I wouldn’t be bragging too much about attendance and fan support. As far as leasing issues in Jacksonville, what about this…

    ” Last week, Jacksonville City Hall told the Jaguars it had defaulted on its contract with the city.
    Wednesday, team owner Shad Khan sent the city a blistering letter, saying he was “shocked,” “perplexed” and “at a loss.”

    Sounds like an issue to me!

  41. harleyforme says: Jun 10, 2012 9:51 PM

    I live in Missouri. 95% of Lambs fans were Chiefs fans who jumped ship when the Lambs got good. If they move the team most of those “fans” won’t even realize it or care.

    Really kameleono?

    I live in Missouri too. Sold out games from the moment they moved until 2 years ago and those were KC fans who jumped ship? And you can shove that “Lambs” square up your a$$!

    hugs and kisses

  42. thermalito says: Jun 12, 2012 10:40 AM

    @harleyforme: The Rams sold out games until 2 years ago?? The Rams haven’t cracked the top 20 in league-wide attendance even once since 2004 there champ. They have ranked in the bottom 3 in attendance 4 out of the last 5 years as well but don’t let the facts get in the way of your rant….

  43. jwh8541 says: Jun 12, 2012 10:58 AM

    The Rams have won 15 games in last 5 years.
    07-3
    08-2
    09-1
    10-7
    11-2

    find a team with comparable string of failure and tell me their attendance.

    provide a link for your attendance figures prior to 07 don’t believe you.

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