The Rams mark their second stint in Los Angeles after leaving the city in 1995 for St. Louis
NFL fans in Los Angeles finally rejoice as the city will mark its pro football return after 21 long years.
The St. Louis Rams successfully got the nods of NFL owners to make its return to Los Angeles starting in the 2016 NFL season. Two other teams, the San Diego Chargers and Oakland Raiders, have yet to decide on their Los Angeles relocations.
The measure for relocation passed via a landslide 30-2 vote during the NFL owners meetings in Houston to mark their return to the United States’ second-largest media market after two decades. The Rams left Los Angeles for St. Louis in 1995, together with the Raiders returning to Oakland.
In Oakland, the Raiders withdrew their application to relocate and decided to work closely with the NFL to broker a deal for a new stadium. However, the Chargers will base its decision to move on a June vote backed by San Diego that will decide on $350-million dollars towards public funding for a new facility to replace Qualcomm Stadium.
According to reports, the NFL has said that it is ready to give out $100-million in financial support, should both the Oakland Raiders and San Diego Chargers successfully pursue the construction of new stadiums in their current markets.
Should the talks fall through, the San Diego Chargers have the first right of refusal to join the now-Los Angeles Rams at the proposed Inglewood stadium side, pending the framework of a possible tenancy or partnership with the Rams, as per reports from the NFL website.
“Relocation is a painful process,” said NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. “It’s painful for the fans, the communities, the teams, for the league in general. Stability is something that we’ve taken a great deal of pride in and in some ways a bittersweet moment because we were unsuccessful in being able to get the kind of facilities that we wanted to get done in their home markets.”
The return of the Rams to Los Angeles also marked the second time that the city of St. Louis lost an NFL franchise. The now Arizona Cardinals left the city prior to the start of the 1988 NFL season.
Photo courtesy: The Los Angeles Times