NFL Wire News

San Diego mayor, fans press to keep Chargers


The Sports Xchange

The city of San Diego is scrambling to find ways to keep the Chargers from moving to Los Angeles.

On Monday, Mayor Kevin Faulconer spoke to NFL commissioner Roger Goodell as fans of the Chargers sent a letter to city attorney Jan Goldsmith asking her to file an antitrust lawsuit against the team.

Faulconer talked to Goodell via phone for about 45 minutes to explain the city’s efforts to build a new stadium to replace Qualcomm Stadium.

“The mayor discussed the actions San Diego has and continues to take toward a new stadium and expressed his commitment to moving forward with a fair plan that meets the needs of the community and the team,” mayoral spokesman Matt Awbrey said in a statement.

Faulconer’s direct contact with the commissioner came after talks with the team broke down last week. The city wants to do an environmental study of a proposed site for a $1.4 billion stadium near Qualcomm in Mission Valley, but the timeline does not work for the Chargers, who have teamed with the Oakland Raiders on a potential stadium in Carson, Calif., and are competing against the St. Louis Rams for the right to move. NFL owners are expected to meet Aug. 11 to discuss the relocation bids.

Meanwhile, in the letter to Goldsmith, fans said the Chargers and NFL “have failed to negotiate in good faith” as the city tries to come up with a stadium solution.

The fans wrote, “At every turn in the negotiations, top NFL executives, including (VP on team relocations) Eric Grubman, and representatives of the San Diego Chargers, including (Chargers attorney) Mark Fabiani, continue to reject every legitimate effort to keep the Chargers in San Diego.”

Fabiani told Jason Cole of Yahoo Sports that the team’s lease “explicitly precludes lawsuits by the city against the team or the NFL in the event of relocation.” He called a lawsuit “a crazy idea, promoted by people who want attention but haven’t bothered to read the lease.”

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