Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Everybody Loves A Parade

Hard not to get chills while watching the victorious Lakers walk down the steps of the Coliseum to a sea of 90,000 purple-and-gold clad Lakers fans.

Thankfully all of them had their furloughs on Wednesday. Wasn't that convenient?

Watching the Lakers greats of the past combined with the new generation -- Pao Gasol and Adam Morrison are going to get me to watch a regular season game yet -- was just a sight to behold. A great day to be a Southern California sports fan. But a sad day, too.

Watching the city rally around the Lakers, you can't help but wonder why the region couldn't rally around an NFL team. Sure, you can make the argument that Southern California fans are too splintered. But seriously, 90,000 people at the Coliseum and hundreds of thousands more on the parade route?

And we still don't have a football team.

But then you realize that the NFL just isn't geared for Southern California. The Eastern seaboard and fly-over America is suited for the fickleness of the NFL. Teams are good one year, bad the next. That doesn't fly out here. Southern Californians have this weird notion that if you are going to pay $100 to watch a football team, that team must be good.

We're morons, right? We should bankrupt our cities even further by funneling money into a franchise that might go 8-8 one year, followed by a 5-11, with a 9-7 playoff team the following year.

Sports like the NBA and MLB are more suited for Southern California where the inequities of incomes and an hour-glass dispersal of teams are common place. The Lakers, Angels and Dodgers can spend the money to be competitive each year. (Though that doesn't explain the Clippers.)

You don't get that in the NFL.

But still, you have to wonder what the NFL in Los Angeles would be like with an owner like Robert Craft who has sustained excellence. Or maybe a team modeled after the Steelers -- a team that's in the playoffs seemingly every year. Of course, we would probably end up with a Jerry Jones or Daniel Snyder.

So forgive me if I dream a little bit, if but for a moment. Pretending that this crowd was filling to Coliseum to welcome the 1999 Super Bowl champion Los Angeles Rams.

5 comments:

The Hatriot said...

We should bankrupt our cities even further by funneling money into a franchise that might go 8-8 one year, followed by a 5-11, with a 9-7 playoff team the following year.

Works for San Diego. This year when their homes burn down because they weren't gonna let no gubmint man tell them to clear back the dry brush from their McMansion/methlab/Minuteman compound they'll blame the State and L.A. County, not the fact that they'd rather pay for an underachieving football team than first-world level emergency response services...

Bokolis said...

Sterling figured out a long time ago that you don't need to spend money to turn a profit on a sports franchise. Since he has no intention of ever selling the Clippers, he doesn't care what that does to the perceived value of the franchise.

Moreover, Sterling is long-time buddies with Buss. For Buss to not have had much of an issue with Sterling moving the Clippers north- and for Sterling not to have an issue with playing second-fiddle- these two must have worked out some sweetheart business deals.

Robster said...

It does work for San Diego. Homeowners here have no problem paying for a football team with one foot out the door, but pay their fair share of taxes to fix century-old water mains? Nooooooooo!

Maybe Sterling handled the eviction notices for Buss's commercial real estate ventures (cough *apartments*), assuming he has any? Just a guess.

Fletch said...

"Southern Californians have this weird notion that if you are going to pay $100 to watch a football team, that team must be good."

Hey, that sounds like New Yorkers this year. Maybe. And replace $100 with $2500. And football with baseball.

Everyone loves a winner, though. Especially when the admission is free.

Sun Devil said...

LA has the highest-paying professional football franchise in the country: U$C.