Talks Held With Five NFL Teams About Moving To L.A.
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Updated on June 10, 2011 at 1:09 p.m.
LOS ANGELES (AP) The president of the sports and entertainment company seeking to build an NFL stadium in downtown Los Angeles says he’s spoken to officials from five pro football franchises about a possible move.
Anschutz Entertainment Group President and CEO Tim Leiweke told the Orange County Register on Thursday that he has spoken with representatives from the Minnesota Vikings, San Diego Chargers, Oakland Raiders, St. Louis Rams and Jacksonville Jaguars.
Leiweke said all those teams are “in the mix,” but conceded, “We’re not packing any (moving) vans right now.”
The most recent discussion took place a week ago, said Leiweke, who didn’t specify which team those talks were with.
Leiweke also said that AEG owner Philip Anschutz was prepared to acquire a majority stake in an NFL team that would play at the proposed venue and that the company was willing to pay for a team to get out of its current lease.
An AEG spokesman did not return a call Friday from The Associated Press.
Chargers spokesman Mark Fabiani told the AP that the team is in frequent contact with Leiweke concerning unrelated business, but that a move to Los Angeles has not been discussed.
He also said that Chargers owner Alex Spanos and his family were not interested in relinquishing a majority stake of the team.
Messages left with the Vikings, Raiders, Rams and Jaguars were not returned.
NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy declined to comment on whether the league was aware of team discussions with AEG.
“Teams are permitted to talk to third parties,” McCarthy said in a statement.
AEG’s $1 billion plan for a 72,000-seat stadium on part of the city’s convention center campus is one of two competing proposals that aim to bring pro football back to Los Angeles 15 years after the Rams and Raiders left the nation’s second-largest market within months of one another.
Warehouse magnate Ed Roski has permits in place to build a separate 75,000-seat stadium about 15 miles east of Los Angeles, in the city of Industry, but has also not secured a team.
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