Written and Media by: Alex Carie
Jan. 12, 2016 seemed like just a regular night for a St. Louis Blues hockey game. However, behind the scenes of St. Louis sports there was a much bigger decision being made that evening. Amidst the Blues 5-2 win over the New Jersey Devils, there was more than just cheers in the air that night. During the game everyone heard the news that the St. Louis Rams would be moving to Los Angeles. Blues fans caught wind of this during the middle of the game, and their moods were made apparent with the chant that they started. Immediately they started screaming “Kroenke Sucks!” Stan Kroenke is the owner of the now named, Los Angeles Rams.
The rest of St. Louis had the same reaction as the Blues fans. The news shocked the people of the city. Earlier that day they had just voted to okay a $1.1 billion riverfront stadium. The people of St. Louis made it known to Kroenke and everyone else following this story that they were not happy. Many sports radio broadcasters spoke out against Kroenke and his decision to move by saying, “I can’t forgive this,” after St. Louis had just topped The Wall Street Journal’s list of America’s top sports cities. A St. Louis podcast host named Kelly Manno came up with a plan to send $250 worth of animal excrement to Kroenke. She did follow through with this and even commented saying that, “I reached my public financial goal for this in just six hours.” This was sent by the Riverfront Times report.
Your regular, everyday fans also felt like they needed to do something to show that they were angry with the decision that was made. For the next couple of days, fans drove by the stadium and threw out all of their Ram’s apparel and memorabilia around the Edward Jones Dome, the former home of the Rams.
Rams fans aren’t just mad, but also feel betrayed. A team that they loved and a team that they stood by through many down years is now leaving the city. They have not forgotten the Super Bowl that this team brought home to the city in 1999. This is more than some other teams can say for themselves.
Los Angeles, however, is having a totally different reaction to the Rams moving. Many of the headlines in Los Angeles were saying, “Welcome Home Rams!” and things of this nature, welcoming back their team who has been gone for the last 22 years. St. Louis has lost two NFL teams since 1988 and not many people suspect that they will ever get another chance at hosting another.
This might be an opportunity for St Louis to make a change when it comes to the professional sports world. St. Louis is the youth capital for soccer in the United States, and this sudden loss of football may be a way for St. Louis to get into the soccer world because of the strong fan base that is in the city. It would also be a chance for St. Louis to either put the Edwards Jones Dome to more use, or they could even build that riverfront stadium that they were willing to build for the Rams.
What will happen to the sports fans of St. Louis? Will they ever be able to embrace a new sports franchise, or will they forever be unsatisfied because of the heart breaking loss of their Rams. It will be interesting to see whether or not they will embrace another team or if they will just try to put more focus into other things. Only time will tell what the future holds for the fans of St. Louis.