First, let me start off by stating I’m a Charger fan and I want them to stay in San Diego.They belong here and not LA. I’d hate to see them go, but it looks like they want to leave America’s finest city.
The roller coaster ride this past week about relocating was terrible for us fans. So if they leave, what’s going to happen with Qualcomm stadium and NFL football in San Diego? Who knows? Maybe the Raiders? I’ve heard the Raiders, and this might be hard for you diehard Charger fans to swallow. But, they might be interested in a renovated Qualcomm Stadium. Didn’t the city want to make that happen for the Chargers? Hmm…
Here is an interesting perspective from San Diego’s own rapping realtor, Rafeal A. Perez published in the SD Union Tribune:
Chargers exit could be a W for San Diego
When the Chargers announced that they would be partnering with the Raiders to build a stadium together, some San Diegans had a moment of disgust. The Chargers now find the Raiders standing in their shadow, ready to make a move.
Just because the Chargers leave doesn’t dismiss the city from its responsibilities in owning Qualcomm Stadium. In real estate, property owners are advised to get the highest, best use of their real estate.
This includes decisions on whether to build, sell or remodel their investments.
If you had an investment property with $80 million in deferred maintenance, millions of dollars in outstanding debt for dated renovations and a tenant that you had to pay to occupy your property with a resulting $12 million annual loss, wouldn’t you be excited that the tenant is moving out?
Being ready to bring a new team is the responsible thing to do. It’s the chance to start over with a blank slate to determine whether to remodel Qualcomm or build a new stadium in Mission Valley, downtown, on the Chula Vista waterfront or even the Sports Arena property. If the Chargers leave San Diego, the team with the worst stadium situation still has a problem.
I flew up to Oakland for the Raiders vs. Packers game and sat in a suite. I can assure you there was nothing luxury about the suite.
However, there is still something special that the Raiders bring to that dump of a stadium. Glances of Super Bowl rings walking through the hallways, living legends like Jim Plunkett posing for photos, and, of course, the most passionate fans in football.
With no official plan on the table in Oakland, and an owner claiming the entire country is a possibility, there is an opportunity to the city that steps to the plate and opens its doors to the Raiders.
San Diego should be preparing to be part of the race to become the Raiders’ preferred landing spot.
The city shouldn’t wait around before making contingency plans. Suddenly all options discarded by the Chargers are back on the table.
The citizens’ initiative doesn’t become a waste if there is still a prospective Plan B partner. If you’ve ever been to a Chargers vs. Raiders game at Qualcomm Stadium, you can attest to the Raiders “home crowd.” Raiders fans travel. Hotels and tourism would benefit from San Diego becoming home to Raider Nation.
Most exciting is the idea of new stars coming to San Diego, like Khalil Mack, Derek Carr and Amari Cooper. The Raiders’ rich history of excellence, championships and Hall of Famers will make fitting in easier.
Imagine seeing John Madden walking in the Gaslamp or Tom Flores making an appearance at the San Ysidro Raiders Image store, or a Raiders team photo taken on the Star of India.
Raiders fans are good people. I know doctors, teachers, soldiers that are huge Raiders fans. The fans who dress up are many times some of the most affluent fans in football.
There is already strong support for the Raiders in San Diego and the Chargers’ departure would only fuel that support.
Perez is a Realtor (theHomeMap.com) and adjunct faculty member at Cuyamaca College.