Thursday, February 11, 2010
Quick thoughts on Rams ownership
By Mike Sando
The Rams' potential sale to an Illinois businessman brings these thoughts to mind:
- The team would probably stay in St. Louis.
- Finding a way to keep the team in St. Louis would stand as the lasting legacies for majority owners Chip Rosenbloom and Lucia Rodriguez, trumping their on-field legacies (specifically, presiding over an era that has seen the team slide into oblivion).
- The new owner, auto parts magnate Shahid Khan, is a Rams fan. As such, he surely has his own strong opinions about the team. What that means for the current Rams leadership remains unclear, but fans don't always take big-picture views on things. Sometimes they're eager to make changes. I don't know much about Khan or how he runs his businesses, but he probably wasn't a fan of auto parts before entering into that line of work. Being a Rams fan could affect how he proceeds if approved as an owner.
- Three-fourths of NFL owners would have to approve the deal, and that might not be a slam dunk. As Howard Balzer points out, "Khan and his wife Ann were investigated for allegedly sheltering hundreds of millions of dollars from income tax." Rosenbloom and Rodriguez are presumably aware of these potential issues and confident those issues could be overcome. In fact, Bernie Miklasz suggests those issues aren't a big deal.
- This is great news for St. Louis Rams fans. The franchise would have had a hard time connecting with fans if a new owner were simply looking at his watch, anxious to move the team elsewhere.
As noted Wednesday, I'm taking Thursday and Friday off. Starting now. I've got a mailbag scheduled for Friday.