LA Chargers: NFL’s laughingstock
After three straight “home” games, the LA Chargers are the laughingstock of the NFL. Despite being 0-4, this team can make a really solid case that they should be at least 2-2. Unfortunately, karma does not work like that. The move up to Carson has left this franchise without a true fan base, league respectability or a true NFL stadium with a home-field advantage. The only people to blame have a Spanos surname.
This past Sunday the soccer stadium the LA Chargers call home was finally full (minus the tarps on the “upper-deck”). Good news finally, right?
Wrong. The Stub Hub Center (too small to be an NFL stadium) was full of Eagles fans. As I watched the game, it became clear that the Chargers will never have a home-field advantage at home!
For the third straight home game, a banner flew over the StubHub Center. This week’s message to LA Chargers owner Dean Spanos?
Wanna see a sellout, Dean? Look in the mirror!
Ironically, the game was an announced sellout, but with A LOT of help from the Eagles fans. For the next two and a half years the Bolts will play in a soccer stadium, then become a tenant in L.A.’s next great stadium. As a native San Diegan, I have seen both sides of fan opinion locally. I have friends who still support the team and those who support any team that plays against them. All San Diegans are firm in the belief that the Chargers lost San Diego, not the other way around.
The “fight for L.A.” is nearly over. The city of L.A. doesn’t care about the Chargers, never have, never will. L.A likes the sexy teams. The LA Chargers have the same amount of sex appeal as Michael Moore. Week 4 ratings proved this. The 6:30 AM Dolphins-Saints game was more widely viewed than the Eagles-LA Chargers in Los Angeles. Please take a moment to think about that. On a Sunday more people woke up very early to watch a game that has no local bearing than watched a team that’s “fighting for L.A.”
I don’t know if this franchise deserves better, in all honesty. Dean Spanos is the worst owner in sports. His track record speaks for itself. For a man who is as “rich and powerful” as he is, why is he such a coward? He turned his back on a city that would’ve built the billionaire a stadium. Instead, he wasted two years of our city’s time by flip-flopping on where he wanted the stadium. The two sites were between Mission Valley (the current home of SDCCU stadium, formerly known as Qualcomm stadium) or downtown San Diego.
Undoubtedly the more attractive choice was downtown, however, it would take a minimum of seven years while the local bus yard was relocated. This proved to not be good enough for Dean. A plan was set and ready to go to a vote last year: the proposal was to build in Mission Valley and the proposers of the bill would run the media campaign to get their message out. Instead, the Chargers took over control and eventually killed the plan from the inside. Only Hillary Clinton has ever run a worse campaign, and she still performed much better at the polls.
It would be inappropriate if I neglected to mention two of the franchise’s all-time greats: Philip Rivers and Antonio Gates. My heart breaks to see those two icons spend their final days in the NFL equivalent of Siberia. Both players will be the last of the “San Diego” Chargers icons.
The city of San Diego will survive without the NFL, as will St. Louis, Oakland and eventually Jacksonville. I cannot say the same about a team that is controlled by anyone named Spanos. If the fight for L.A. was a real fight, it would have ended before the second round.