Updated: Jan 1, 2021
After the failed expansion attempts in STL for a new NFL franchise, city leaders pushed hard for a reward after piling millions into the nearly open TWA Dome.
Georgia Frontiere was looking for greener pastures out of LA because she couldn’t get a stadium deal done. During the ’94 season, the Rams became a lame duck in LA.
Attendance tanked, fans tuned out, they saw the writing on the wall. They all knew what was coming, and they didn’t even put up a fight (except for a slight few) to try and keep the team. The Rams made an initial attempt to move out of LA, disapproved by the NFL owners. When STL officials were given the go-ahead by city leadership to do everything necessary to land an STL franchise, they went all out and sold their soul in the process.
The sad thing is, and this is just my opinion, St. Louis already had the Rams if they had made a better attempt at negotiating the lease with the Rams. Instead, they gave up the farm to land a team that could’ve been theirs for a lot less than the sweetheart deal that was given. St. Louis paid $15 million in relocation fees, and The Rams received a 260 million dollar stadium, a 15 million dollar practice facility in Earth City, and a $250,000 yearly lease. St. Louis also ate the Rams’ $30 million debt to LA and all this to land a team in the Lou.
As you can see, everybody’s good old buddy Georgia who desperately wanted to come home to STL to save Football, was a farce. She made millions in the process of coming “home” the Rams went from operating at a 9 million dollar loss a year in LA to a 20 million dollar profit a year in STL. Say it ain’t so Georgia! Oh, it is so! So after the slam dunk of expansion just kissed off the rim, officials gave away the farm for magic beans that barely grew and were half rotten.
In ’95, when the team moved, Georgia sold a 40% stake in the team to Stanley Enos Kroenke, the wealthy real estate tycoon and villain of this story, hailing from Columbia, Missouri, bought the 30% then 40% stake (in the early 2000s) for, get this, $60 million. That’s right, and you read that correctly. When the unfortunate passing of majority owner Georgia Frontiere passed away from cancer in 2008, the Rosenbloom children became de facto owners of a team they didn’t want. They started shopping the team, and Shahid Khan places the winning bid to buy the team, but OUTTA NOWHERE COMES STAN KROENKE!!!