September 28, 2016

Calling Kroenke’s bluff

Illustrated by Victoria Courtney

Illustrated by Victoria Courtney

Put your umbrellas away because the sky isn’t falling yet.

On Jan. 5, St. Louis Rams owner Stan Kroenke (AKA Silent Stan, AKA Crypt Keeper, AKA The One Guy with the Bad Toupee and Mustache) announced he would be moving the Rams to Los Angeles all on his own dime. He and his partner, Stockbridge Capital Group, would build an 80,000-seat stadium in Inglewood, California. Kroenke also said he would move the team regardless of whether he got the approval of other NFL owners.

Take that, other rich guys!

But Kroenke’s threats to move the team are like the threats of my neighbor, who says he’ll call the cops if I don’t stop logging onto his wi-fi — they are not to be feared. If either of those two men wanted to move a team to Los Angeles or have me arrested for technically-free wi-fi, they would have done it already.

Kroenke has until Feb. 15 to file his team for relocation. Yet no such paperwork has been filed. Why? Because  Kroenke is playing poker with Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon, and he’s winning — which isn’t that hard to do.

Jay “I Don’t Know What I’m Doing” Nixon is not the best candidate to solve the city’s NFL or racial troubles. But he is very good at posing for pictures and posting a woman’s buttcrack on Election Day. (Google it. It’s a real thing.)

Kroenke is a difficult guy to read, and there isn’t a single person on Earth who can figure out what his true intentions are. But I can guess he’s pretending he’ll move the team so St. Louis will get off its butt and give him everything to stay.

They’ve already given him a brand-new stadium that can accommodate professional soccer (foreign or domestic teams), and he doesn’t even have to foot the entire bill. All Kroenke had to do was say he’s moving to LA and the city and state said, “uncle.”

And if you think I’m wrong, use your adult brain for a second.

The St. Louis Rams are awful. They are the worst product in the NFL. They have the most losses since 2004 and haven’t made the playoffs since. Do you really think a dumpster-fire town like LA is going to pay money to see the Rams lose every Sunday?

The LA Lakers owned Los Angeles forever — until this year, because they lose all the time. The LA Kings didn’t even know they had a fan base until they made the playoffs. LA “fans” forgot the Clippers existed until they got Chris Paul and a playoff berth.

I believe Kroenke is playing one hell of a bluff and will wind up getting his stadium in St. Louis. It’s a smart business decision, and with the team on the rise and a large fan base already established in St. Louis, the results will pay off sooner than if he moved to LA.

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  • NihilistZerO

    Kroenke had all the leverage he needed WITHOUT making the stadium agreement with his Hollywood Park partners. The fact remains Kroenke leave a BILLION dollars plus on the table if he doesn’t move the Rams into his new stadium. Do you really think he’d do that to lease a stadium in StL???

    Not to mention the NFL is in total dog and pony show form here, Kroenke solves the LA AND the Oakland problem as the Raiders are his likely tenant. Spanos gets some extra relocation fee hush money to build in San Diego and every stadium situation in the NFL sans Miami and Jacksonville are solved.

  • Tim Moron Godfry

    If the team is on the rise, than your argument on him moving the team because they suck is moot. Awful article… And he never said he was moving the team, he just said he was building a stadium. They don’t necessarily have to go hand in hand.

  • Francis Paul Ganon

    Dumbest thing I’ve heard since reading shane gray’s last article.

  • Youngblood

    What an awful article. The worst is when an uninformed writer parades around telling other people to use their brain. St Louis us “giving” Stan a stadium? Uhh, 2 minutes of research and you’d know St Louis is asking Stan to pay half of a stadium the city woukd own, which won’t be happening. And your assertions about the LA fanbase’s aren’t even worth entertaining. As an L.A. resident who has heard about the unreported meetings Kroenke has been having in Southern California, lemme help you out…the last thing Stan Kroenke wants to do is remain in St Louis. BTW You would be shocked that he applied for relocation yet, even though the relocation window hasn’t even opened yet! What a joke, please quit writing yesterday.