L.A. Pushing For Not 1 But 2 Football Teams
Los Angeles won't really be a self-respecting, world-class city until it gets another football team. And why stop at just one? A City Councilman is requesting two, count 'em, two NFL teams.
L.A. hasn't had its own football team since 1994 when the Raiders returned to Oakland and the Rams moved to St. Louis.
Today, the City Council's Economic Development Committee discussed Councilmember Tom LaBonge's motion to bring back NFL to our fair city.
Per LaBonge's website, the motion "reaffirms and reiterates [the City Council's] support for the efforts of the National Football League to bring its franchise back to the City of Los Angeles." It also asks the league to encourage bringing two football teams to the city.
As Jim Morrison sang, "Love Me Two Teams, Babe." Er, Times.
Mayor Eric Garcetti says he wouldn't mind having football back in El Lay, but he's leery of what the NFL wants in return. As he told the LA Times earlier this month, "I think having [the] NFL in Los Angeles is a priority. It's great. It's important. But I also know that a lot of people have strived for a long time. And we've been very clear that we won't do 'anything' to have the NFL. It has to be on our terms."
As LAist sports writer Jimmy Bramlett put it earlier this year, "The NFL has made no secret that Los Angeles is its own bully pulpit to extort tax money from cities in an effort to build brighter glittier stadia. Without Los Angeles, how will the NFL convince the poor folks in cities across the country to pony up hundreds of millions of dollar to keep their horse manure of a team?"
The city approved a tentative deal last year with Anschutz Entertainment Group to build a 72,000-seat stadium downtown near Staples Center because that part of town just isn't crowded enough. AEG so far has not shown much progress in persuading the NFL to give us a team, let alone two.
"I'd love to have a team," Garcetti told the Times. "And I think it's important for us to grow our ties to the NFL. They want to be here. But this really comes down to the individual decisions of team owners."