“Memo to the Chargers Owner”
Woe to be the owner of the Chargers. Woe to have the last name Spanos and be disliked so much in your adopted home town.
Woe to have spent millions to try and buy favoritism, well-being, and votes on a stadium issue, only to be rejected.
Dean Spanos and is family are under seige, rightly or wrongly.
You could dislike them for the product on the field, possibly looking at another losing season, which would be the 23rd in 33-years of ownership.
You could grieve they’ve been to just one Super Bowl, or made fatal mistakes in the mishandling of the decisions on their most popular coaches, Don Coryell, Bobby Ross and Marty Schottenheimer.
You can surely hold a grudge at all of the business decisions, from the Stadium Super Bowl seat expansion, to the egregious ticket guarantee, to the starts, stops, failures and off ramp activities involving the building of a stadium and the threats to move to Los Angeles.
If the (30-2) NFL owners vote to dismiss the Spanos idea of the Carson Stadium wasn’t the jolt of a lifetime, then maybe this setback at the voter’s booth, might superceed all of his disappointments of owning this NFL franchise.
The Spanos’ speak of the world ‘loyalty’ so often, and it counts for something, if you are on the receiving end of their family loyalty. Sons get cushy front office jobs. Employees who had towed the line, keep their jobs.
But player loyalty has come only after pain of separation. Fan loyalty has not been rewarded, especially with the on-going threats of a move to LA, echoed from Spanos spokesman on a regular basis.
Dean Spanos wants to be liked and respected.
Tough to do when you keep seeing his actions, read his press statements, and wait for the next move that goes against logic, from someone who says he badly wants to stay in San Diego.
So we have reached a point where someone has to step forward and make a positive move to pick up the pieces of the shattered relationships, and voted down proposals we have seen.
Very simply said, Dean Spanos doesn’t need more time to think things thru. He needs to take action to show he is going to stay in San Diego.
He has the option to move January 15th, invoking a clause to relocate to Los Angeles. He can do it in January 2017, and could also use the clause in January 2018.
If he wants to get a stadium bill passed, end the threat of a move. Void the 2017-clause, go public, commit to work the next year with all the key factions, city-county, the hotel industry, tourism, convention center people.
Find alternative funding plans, consider the Qualcomm sight, add in the potential of using hotel tax money, Chargers-NFL money, city-county money, and build in Mission Valley for football, and at Tailgate Park for the annex.
But the only way to have credible talks, free of agendas, is to end the threats, by voiding the January 2017 LA-clause, giving this one full year of all parties on board, to find a blueprint that works.
Dean Spanos cannot rescue his good name, unless he is willing to do the right thing, keep the franchise here, and to push the ball forward in a collective deal that helps his team, this city, and his legacy.
Ending the LA threat is the most credible thing he can do, and should be the first step to take the other steps to get a stadium built.
Anything short of that is only empty rhetoric, time wasted, and more money spent.