The Morning After STL

San Diego Sports Radio Host Talks New Chargers Stadium Developments, Rams’ Future

Brendan Marks, Thu, 18 Jun 2015 15:14:00 GMT

the ongoing stadium saga between san diego and its football team reached a crescendo on wednesday after a city spokesman made it clear the city believes the chargers will leave for los angeles.

Darren Smith of The Mighty 1090 AM in San Diego joined The Ryan Kelley Morning After on Thursday to discuss the latest developments surrounding the situation and what it could mean for the future of the Rams.

Most of the notable excerpts can be read below. You can listen to the whole interview here:

San Diego radio host talks Chargers’ stadium situation

Verbal shots were fired from both sides yesterday. You reaction to what transpired?

“It’s a powder keg kind of. I was just sitting idle and everyone had a sense it was probably going to blow. Different people around the city…kept flicking matches at it. Chargers were flicking matches at it. Eventually it just bloew. The mayor had a task force come out and try to devise a financing plan (for a new stadium). The plan was not well received by the Chargers. As a matter of fact, privately they started laughing at it. After a third round of negotiations two days ago, the Chargers left the meeting, everybody thought they left the meeting on a positive note. Then they dropped the bomb and a statement and said ‘We’re done here. We don’t agree we can get it done on the city’s timeline and we refust to work with them any longer until they come up with a better plan.’ As of now, it seems to suggest things are at an impasse in San Diego.”

Would you agree yesterday was the most severe sign the Chargers will leave?

“I think it was the first time the Chargers publically said what a lot of people thought they felt. I don’t know if it’s completely irreparable at this point. The mayor’s trying to put a positive spin on it. I understand they have to say what they have to say. But let’s face it, if the Chargers aren’t on board, it doesn’t matter what the city does. The Chargers think it’s a dumb idea. They think what the city put in front of them is stupid and laughable. The Chargers have told everybody ‘We’re not interested.'”

You think there’s any chance at all the Chargers and its owner Dean Spanos will team up with Stan Kroenke in Inglewood?

“I do actually. It’s just a theory. I don’t have a bunch of inside sources. My second-hand information seems to suggest to me…the Inglewood project is the site the NFL would probably look more favorable upon. I think the Inglewood site is probably the smartest one logistically. If it’s true the NFL wants two teams in Los Angeles, I do think that makes a lot of sense. I think the Chargers have gotten the Rams’ attention. Maybe (Stan) Kroenke doesn’t care about (Chargers owner) Dean Spanos. But I can’t imagine all the other NFL owners (will let Spanos go by the wayside). I think (Carson) is what the Chargers are trying to do to get themselves involved somehow on equal footing with Stan Kroenke and the Rams.”

What have you heard on Spanos not wanting to be second-fiddle to another owner?

“That’s the point that’s raised a lot. I’ve heard the same thing. I don’t know that Dean needs to be the Alpha. I just don’t think he wants to be the Jets. He doesn’t want to be a second-class citizen. The Rams know they’re going to have to deal with Dean at some point. I think he just wants it to look like a partnership. He was the lead dog with the Carson project. But as it relates to Inglewood, put us on equal terms. But as we all know, the egos of these billionaires sometimes get a little short-sighted. I wonder if the NFL is trying to smooth out (any potential personality differences).”

On the Raiders:

“There are people from the Raiders wondering what their role is going to be. They’re all starting to cover themselves and want to make sure they don’t get cut out. There’s only two chairs in Los Angeles and three teams. I think they’re all probably distrustful of one another.”

It seems 60 to 70 percent of Rams fans think the team will be gone next year. How would you gauge the chances of the Chargers being in San Diego in 2016?

“I’d say that’s about where we are and I also think that number’s growing. You have a lot of fans who’s telling the Chargers to get out. The city’s tired of Mark Fabiani, Dean Spanos’ spokesperson, who’s the face of the Chargers stadium. I think they’re getting really tired of it. They’re ticked off. They’re frustrated by the process. I think the majority of fans at this point probably think this is no longer leverage. They’ve come to the reality (the Chargers are leaving) and bracing for it.”

It seems Fabiani’s tact is more antagonistic than Rams COO Kevin Demoff, who’s basically the face of the team. Is that an accurate read?

“Oh Fabiani, he’s a flamethrower man. That guy will torch anybody at anytime. He’s definitely the most vitriolic person out of anybody involved. I think everything (Chargers executive Mark) Fabiani does is choreographed. I don’t think there’s a single thing that comes out of his mouth that doesn’ thave a purpose. At least (Stan) Kroenke hasn’t said a bunch of things that’s really turned people off. But if it goes to a vote in San Diego, they may remember everything Fabiani has said and his public display of emotions…people are going to remember that.”