Tuesday, June 21, 2011

The Inaugural Mailbag

Loyal readers know that I’ve been hyping this mailbag for quite a while. It’s happening. Sure, I only got one question so far (thanks Josh!), but that’s not going to stop me from running this thing.

It’s really not that tough, people. Maybe you all need some inspiration. Here’s one excellent mailbag. Here’s another. Here’s a third example. Soak up some of the question…ness(?) from those mailbags and use it to craft your own impressive queries. Become a celebrity among the little community that reads this site. Or, Josh, just keep lobbing ‘em in.

Onto the mailbag:

Thoughts on Rams being discussed as one of teams that could move to LA?

-Josh

I’m a little worried. Not “sell-everything-the-Rapture’s-coming” worried, but still, a bit worried. Last year, for the first time, I became a partial season-ticket holder of the Rams, and I have to say, going to the games was pretty awesome. The commercial breaks weren’t as annoying as I remember them, and I’m psychotic enough to think that my “fake hut” routine when the Rams are on defense was responsible for all of the other team’s false starts—it made me really feel like a part of the team! Combine that with my potentially unhealthy mancrush on Sam Bradford, and part of me thinks that I’d be devastated if they left.

Not that I think they’re going to move. Plenty of other teams make a lot more sense to become the second pro football team in L.A. (USC being the first). The Chargers could move a couple of hours up I-5 pretty painlessly. Nobody knows if the Vikings are going to get a stadium deal through. The Bills will be auctioned off to the highest bidder when Ralph Wilson croaks. Al Davis would move the Raiders just to fuck with everyone. Jacksonville is an NFL ghost town. So there are plenty of other teams that make more sense in L.A. than the Rams. Not to mention that the Rams only pay $250,000 in rent annually to the city of St. Louis to play at the dome—they basically get use of the facility for the cost of the 52nd man on the roster.

I get it. The history is there. There are still a lot of Rams fans in L.A. Rams owner Stan Kroenke might be able to make more cash out there, or he might be able to make a cool 33% on a team that he just purchased by flipping it to AEG. But Kroenke does have some allegiance to Missouri; he and brother-in-law Bill Laurie pretty much bankroll Mizzou’s basketball program, and Kroenke’s son, Josh (who now owns the Nuggets—hey, wait a minute…YOUR name is Josh, too…) was the DWGTOTMT (“Designated White Guy There Only To Make Threes”) for Mizzou for four years. Maybe most importantly, his mother-in-law (from the Walton family of Wal-Mart fame) lives close to St. Louis, and attends every home game. Do you think that Kroenke is going to kill that golden goose?

At the end of the day, I think they’ll stay. But that raises a much more important point: would it be that awful if they left? I could still follow the team and catch all of their games on TV, even if it would mean going to a sports bar. It wouldn’t change too much in my day-to-day life, other than me not being able to stalk Sam Bradford attend home games anymore. It kind of makes me feel like an asshole that I’m so invested in the future of a sports team, because there are so many more important things out there to worry about, but I think on some level it boils down to fear of rejection. As a city and community, we don’t want a team to tell us they’ve found something better. St. Louis already has a bit of an inferiority complex with regard to other cities—losing a second NFL franchise would only compound these problems. So though I still kind of feel like an asshole, at least I now realize that it’s not just about a football team moving; it’s also about ripping out the hearts of a bunch of inferiority complex-bound middle Americans. At least that’s something.

D.J. Gelner is a writer, entrepreneur, and recovering attorney in St. Louis, Missouri. You can e-mail him your mailbag questions at djssuperblog@gmail.com. Follow him on twitter @djgelner. Friend him on facebook here.

2 comments:

  1. Thanks, DJ. I don't want to see the Rams or the Chargers move. However, I wouldn't mind if the Raiders or the Jaguars moved to LA (or stayed put).

    If there's a season, I hope that one of my favorite college players (Brian Kehl!) plays well for the Rams. He says that they have told him he has a good shot to start if he improves over the off-season.

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  2. They definitely played Kehl a lot down the stretch--if he's one of Spags' guys, then I'm sure he'll be fine. Tell him good luck, and that Ram Nation is behind him!

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