Reports have been pouring on to my desk and answering machine that the legendary Oakland Raiders may be returning to Los Angeles. The last time the Oakland Raiders moved to Los Angeles it was a huge plus, as they would soon win a Superbowl with then stars Marcus Allen, Jim Plunkett, Lyle Alzado and Howie Long. Could history possibly repeat itself ?
Would a return to Los Angeles in the 21st century be a profitable move for the Raider organization. Is it even possible that Raiders owner, Al Davis, would even consider the move?
News of the offer to Oakland began when reports of a new stadium in Los Angeles hit the airwaves. According to the Orange County Register, Anschutz (AEG), a sports and entertainment company, wants to build an enormous NFL football stadium in the middle of downtown Los Angeles and is looking for a team to take ownership of the gridiron. AEG is willing to pay up the lease for a team if it decids to move to Los Angeles however, it appears that billionaire owner Phillip Anschultz is also wanting part ownership.
The Anschutz organization has invited five football teams to play in Los Angeles and receive the new stadium. Those teams would be the Oakland Raiders, The San Diego Chargers, the St. Louis Rams and the Jacksonville Jaguars. Of the five, two are former Los Angeles teams: the Los Angeles Rams and the Superbowl Champion Los Angeles Raiders.
Pondering on this move for the Raiders, it could be quite profitable. One reason is that the stadium will hold more fans and because it is in a bigger city the attendance will certainly grow. But the con to that picture is that owner Al Davis would never give up any part of the Oakland Raider organization. This fact alone is reason enough that the Raiders will not go back to Los Angeles. Second is the attendance of fans from the northern part of California.
The Oakland Raiders originated from Oakland, CA and for many fans, well..the Raiders belong in Oakland. The team has a deep history in Oakland, beginning with its humble start at Frank Youell Field ( 1962-1965). The field was named after an undertaker in the area and has a certain mystique for the Silver and Black.
Next is the move itself and the distance from its origins. Will the Silver and Black loyal be willing to drive 371 miles down to Los Angeles to see their beloved Raiders. Chances are yes/no.
Yes, because no matter where the Raiders are in California, they have a huge following. For fans in Los Angeles, it's great news if the Raiders agree to come to the area.
No, because there are the stubborn fans who feel the Raiders are from Oakland and should remain. So they may chose to stay home on those game days. Many feel that the Oakland Raiders should simply build themselves a new Coliseum in Oakland and stay rooted at home.
The vote is divided.
Yet overall, a move to Los Angeles could be profitable. Al Davis moved the Oakland Raiders to Los Angeles back in 1982, after a huge battle with the courts and some NFL owners. His primary reason was that he wanted to add luxury boxes. The addition of luxury boxes brings higher prices and "luxury as you watch the game and are treated like a king".
The move proved to be successful. The Los Angeles Raiders finished with an 8-1 record, due to a lockout season in '82. 1983, however, was the year that they went 12-4, defeated their rivals the Pittsburgh Steelers and defeated Joe Theismann and the Washington Redskins in Superbowl XVIII !!! Go Raiders!!!
So could a move to Los Angles possibly repeat itself? After all, the team defeated the AFC West with a perfect record last season.
The team is playing much better and has even added some stellar staff to move the Raiders to No. 1.
Their running game is surely there, as RB Darren McFadden is reminiscent of Marcus Allen.
Defensively, the Raiders' "Silver and Black Attack" is getting stronger, faster and meaner, as this is being read. So it could pan out. As for profits (again ), well as a fan, one would hope that prices for condiments would drop and security would increase due to the increase in attendance.
Los Angeles has a lot more gangs, and for this writer, that would be the only reason not to attend a game in Los Angeles. I don't want to cheer my team on with my children, only to be stabbed by some thug. But with elite and improved security, one could easily change one's mind. Let's not forget that Los Angeles has a lot more stars, so it could be nice seeing Ice Cube more often.
Whether the Oakland Raiders decide to move to Los Angeles or remain in Oakland, the primary concern is the return to greatness.
If a move to Los Angles helps the Raiders win two more Superbowls by 2020, then it would be a perfect move. Just the same, if remaining in Oakland produces the same results, well then the Raiders should stay at home where their roots are extremely strong.
It should be noted that when the Raiders returned to Oakland in 1995, the fans rejoiced and were pleased to see the prodigal son come home.
Chances are the Raiders are staying in Oakland. As mentioned before, there is no way theat owner Al davis will give up any part of the Oakland Raiders. Plain and simple.
It's a rough neighborhood behind the Coliseum, for those who have been to the games. However, the location makes games available to the underprivileged and local vendors. There is simply too much history in Oakland for the Raiders. It would be nice to see a new coliseum built in Oakland for the Raiders. Either way, I still bleed for my team. Go Raiders and "in Al Davis we trust ".