We, as San Diego football fans, have been on a rollercoaster of emotions for the last couple of years.
The Chargers move to L.A. started picking up more steam, as there appeared to be a strategic move by Spanos to get San Diego to up their financial help towards building a stadium. Thoughts that the Chargers would never really leave started to brew, then… POW! One early morning, Dean and his garbage shoot of a mouth told someone to post an “official statement” on Twitter announcing that the Chargers will officially be moving to Los Angeles starting with the 2017-2018 season.
Since then, the city has been uniting, while Charger fans and ex-Charger fans have been dividing. The Padres and the city are throwing a San Diego Sports fest Saturday February 11, and the city made its official proposal to MLS to acquire a possible expansion team. Both of these things helped lift the mood of fans who were still grieving the loss of their beloved Chargers.
But now, things are taking a weird turn, as it appears the City of San Diego has reached out to the NFL about a potential Raiders move.
If you haven’t been following this, Mark Davis and the Oakland Raiders were offered $650 Million from Las Vegas Sands Corp. CEO and chairman Sheldon Adelson. This offer, on top of an approved $750 million Clark County hotel tax increase and $500 from the Raiders would fund the $1.9 billion stadium planned to be built in the city of Las Vegas. So, with this plan set, the Raiders officially filed for relocation to Vegas on January 19.
However, after news emerged that the Raiders’ organization did not intend to include Adleson in any of the team plans, the Las Vegas casino mogul backed out of the deal, leaving the potential move in jeopardy.
With the Raiders now looking for a location to move to, it appears the city of San Diego and some of it’s citizens are warming up to a potential San Diego Raiders team. Yes. The San Diego Raiders. It almost sounds just as weird as Los Angeles Chargers, but not quite.
San Diego Union Tribune writer, Kevin Acee, reported that mayor Kevin Faulconer and another, unnamed city official reached out to the NFL and apparently let them know San Diego is willing to talk once the time comes.
The Charger and Raider rivalry runs deep in the city of San Diego. Charger diehards, including me, have been taught to hate the Raiders their entire lives. Even with the Chargers and Dean kicking fans in the stomach by leaving abruptly, I’m not too sure how many ex-Charger fans would be able to sport the Silver and Black.
However, obviously there have been tens of thousands of fans who came to Qualcomm Stadium every season showing their support for the Raiders, so filling up a San Diego Stadium with Raiders fans seems like it would be an easy task to accomplish. This, along with a strong Raider fanbase all across Los Angeles and Riverside counties, means there are plenty of more fans who would also be willing to take the trip to SD.
So, if the Las Vegas plans fall through for Mark Davis, and Oakland is still unable to supply a stadium proposal that will work, then San Diego may very well be an option for Raider Nation. How will ex-San Diego Charger fans take it? I’m not sure. But without question, the Raiders will be able to find a home in San Diego. We will just have to wait and see what happens.