Business & Economy

FAQ: Are the San Diego Chargers moving to Los Angeles?

File: Vincent Brown of the San Diego Chargers goes up for the ball against Chimdi Chekwa of the Oakland Raiders on Dec. 22, 2013 at Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego.
File: Vincent Brown of the San Diego Chargers goes up for the ball against Chimdi Chekwa of the Oakland Raiders on Dec. 22, 2013 at Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego.
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They’re the San Diego Chargers for now, but for how much longer? The team filed a trademark application for the "Los Angeles Chargers" and "L.A. Chargers." Here are the answers to some questions this raises.

So does this mean the Chargers are moving here?

No, companies file preemptive trademark requests all the time. The Chargers filed these applications last Thursday — two days after NFL owners granted the team permission to join the Rams in Inglewood.
 
So it still seems like there’s a good chance the Chargers will be playing here, but this in itself doesn’t mean a whole lot. The two teams are still negotiating.

How are those negotiations going?

It’s hard to tell. We know there was a meeting Monday. We know this because the Rams and Chargers put out what may be the shortest press release in history on Monday.
 
It read all of two sentences, which were: “We have concluded our first meeting. We mutually have agreed not to publicly discuss details of this or any future meeting.”

How quickly do they have to strike a deal?

The Chargers have one year to decide whether they’re coming to L.A. — but if they’re going to come next season, they have to decide that by March 23.

Of course, it would seem like the Chargers, if they are going to go, would want to come quickly — to avoid the Rams getting too much of a head start.

The NFL, in the way it loves to balance everything as much as possible, gave the Rams incentive to strike a deal quickly. They can’t sell personal seat licenses until next February — unless a second team joins them before then.

How do the Rams feel about a second team joining them?

Rams owner Stan Kroenke, when asked by KPCC whether two teams can thrive in L.A., clearly talked about the Chargers as a stadium tenant rather than a co-owner. The team has the option to be either, and it seems like they’d certainly want to be a co-owner — though of course, the Chargers' owners don’t have nearly the financial resources of Kroenke.

Kroenke does own the surrounding mega-development, so it would be beneficial to him to have 10 more games a year. He also gets more relocation money from the NFL — and if the Chargers do end up splitting stadium costs, it cuts down on the risk.

But that would also mean he would no longer own the only NFL team in L.A.