Posted by David Oates 3 weeks, 6 days ago

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While I didn’t foresee how disastrous the greedy decision by NFL and the Spanos family to forgo 56 years of tradition and loyalty would end up, I can’t say that I’m unhappy about it. The paltry attendance at the soccer stadium the Chargers will call home through 2019 is eclipsed only by the poor showing on the field itself. While not taking delight in the misfortunes of the players and front office staff that had nothing to do with the decision to uproot the Bolts from America’s Finest City, I honestly feel there are just desserts in how this is all playing out.

There’s even talk now of the team moving back to San Diego; sort of akin to Bobby Ewing’s awkward return to the TV show, Dallas, after being run over by a car two seasons prior. Sure everyone knew it was a bit of a joke to pretend it never happened. Nevertheless, it would appear that some suits at NFL headquarters are hoping that fans would simply suspend disbelief if they decided to employ a “Do-Over.”

While unlikely, the notion is worth discussing, if for no other reason than to argue that San Diego shouldn’t even consider it; especially if the Spanos family remain majority owners of the Chargers. The city would forever be known as the town professional football could walk over. It’s as if the team were a neglectful boyfriend who, after leaving for another lover, return to open arms after things didn’t work out.

What’s more, San Diego doesn’t need the Chargers to boost its brand. The region is still better known first and foremost for its weather, beaches and world-class zoo. America’s Finest City draws conventioneers and tourists for these reasons; not because they see the Chargers struggle each year to produce a .500 season. Furthermore, the sports brand in this region transcends multiple teams; including the rebuilding Padres, top-ranked San Diego State University football and basketball programs, the perennially popular Farmers Insurance Open, the AHL Gulls and others.

The only way I see San Diego winning with the return of the Chargers is if the Spanos Family isn't involved. Perhaps that’s the best option would come about if the NFL realized they unnecessarily got backed into a corner by agreeing to two franchises in Los Angeles, point the fingers deservedly so at the current Bolts ownership and force them to sell the team. Other sports, most notably the NBA and the Clippers, made similar moves. In this scenario, San Diego would come out looking vindicated and also in the driver’s seat to push forward their original stadium plan without objection. 

We’ll see how this all plays out. I, for one, hope the NFL sees the errors of their ways like any San Diegan, but would only agree to the team’s return under the right condition. Anything less from a PR front would not bode well for the city.

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