Maintaining a professional sports franchise is no easy task to conquer, especially when owners around North America make it look so easy. But in reality, hundreds of millions of dollars are invested on the line every year. The majority of the franchises that are successful long-term however, are the ones who preserve liveliness within the organization frequently.
The pain that St. Louis fans are about to endure will be something new to them, but evidently it was only a matter of time for the phenomena to develop. Over the past year, there were already serious talks looming about the St. Louis Rams’ journey back to Los Angeles. And on Tuesday night it became official.
My heart breaks for Rams’ fans, because I too remember being a young kid having my Vancouver Grizzlies taken away from my childhood. The team relocating to Memphis the following year to this day still haunts me. For St. Louis rather, the level of pain can be appraised into a wide variety of intervals. The once high-powered offense of the late 90’s and early 2000’s, (known as the greatest show on turf) which featured Kurt Warner and Marshall Faulk, were one play away from winning two Super Bowls. That run now seems like centuries ago since the franchise has recently receded considerably.
For me, St. Louis flashes potential of being a well-developed sports city and one that deserves all four major sports leagues. While the city still claims the Blues and Cardinals, which also comes with the honor of being some of the best fans in baseball, if not the North American sport. On top of this, the spotlight of the Missouri Valley Conference tournament takes place annually in March. Not to mention on occasion, the hosting of first and second round NCAA Tournament action.
The departing of a beloved franchise is a punch in the chest for sure. However, the pondering question that resides in St. Louis will be if the city will ever earn the right to fulfill another professional football franchise again. It’s a serious debate for further discussion, and it may not seek out any inconclusive answers. Though it’s not out of the question, that we can see an encore of this in the next decade or so. For instance, in the late 20th century, relocation or expansion happened quite frequently. The first coming in 2005, where the Montreal Expos moved to Washington, D.C. and became the Washington Nationals. Later it came through the emergence of the Oklahoma City Thunder in 2008 after Seattle lost the rights of the Super Sonics. Nowadays the trend is rapidly diminishing and happening at a lesser rate every year. Before the Rams’ switch back to Los Angeles. The most recent team to relocate were the NHL’s Atlanta Thrashers in 2011 as they became the Winnipeg Jets overnight.