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  1. #1
    MauiRam's Avatar
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    Kroenke: Rams would stay here ..

    By Bernie Miklasz
    ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH
    04/21/2010

    If Stan Kroenke gains NFL approval in his quest to purchase the Rams, he vows to do everything he can to secure the team's long-term future in St. Louis.

    In his first interview since announcing that he'd exercised an option to match businessman Shahid Khan's bid for the available 60 percent of the team, Kroenke broke his customary silence in an attempt to reassure Rams fans of his positive intentions.

    "I'm going to attempt to do everything that I can to keep the Rams in St. Louis," Kroenke said in a phone interview Tuesday night. "Just as I did everything that I could to bring the team to St. Louis in 1995. I believe my actions speak for themselves."

    In the early 1990s, Kroenke became the lead investor in a St. Louis group that unsuccessfully pursued an NFL expansion franchise. But Kroenke later purchased 40 percent of the Rams from owner Georgia Frontiere as a precondition of the franchise's move from Los Angeles to St. Louis before the 1995 season.


    "There's a track record," Kroenke said. "I've always stepped up for pro football in St. Louis. And I'm stepping up one more time."

    Kroenke, citing confidentiality agreements, declined to discuss his plan to persuade the NFL to accommodate his bid for the Rams. Because of current league guidelines, Kroenke must work around NFL rules that prohibiting cross-ownership. He may have a problem in gaining clearance from the NFL because of his ownership of NBA and NHL franchises in Denver. The Post-Dispatch recently reported that one potential solution is to have Kroenke sell the Denver sports franchises to his wife, Ann.

    Again citing confidentiality agreements, Kroenke declined to discuss his dealings with Khan, who had hoped to have Kroenke stay on board as a 40 percent partner. A report in the Sports Business Journal claimed that Kroenke had asked Khan for "a mid- to high eight-figure fee" in return for allowing Khan to proceed with his attempted purchase of 60 percent of the Rams.

    Since Kroenke decided to match Khan's bid, Kroenke's motives have come under scrutiny. For starters, Kroenke didn't express a commitment to St. Louis in the statement he issued to announce his decision to match. Then came a report that Kroenke was a member of an NFL committee that supervises potential new-stadium projects in Los Angeles, which is seeking an NFL franchise. Then came the Sports Business Journal report, which caused more commotion in St. Louis.

    Kroenke is bothered by the perception that he'd work against St. Louis, or that he'd scheme to move the Rams back to Los Angeles. He pointed to a life spent largely inside Missouri borders, and his base in Columbia, Mo.

    "I'm born and raised in Missouri," Kroenke said. "I've been a Missourian for 60 years. People in our state know me. People know I can be trusted. People know I am an honorable guy."

    Kroenke mentioned that his mother-in-law, who is 86, attends every Rams home game as an enthusiastic fan. And she is accompanied to the games by her sister, who lives in the St. Louis area. Kroenke didn't finish the obvious point, but I'll finish it for him: Why would anyone believe he'd want to move the Rams away from beloved family members?

    The Rams' lease at the Edward Jones Dome is in question. Unless the facility ranks among the top 25 percent of NFL facilities which is virtually impossible the Rams' lease would be nullified after the 2014 season. And the team would be free to move unless a new agreement can be reached.

    Kroenke said, "I'll do my damnedest," to secure the Rams' future in St. Louis.

    During our interview, Kroenke's passion was striking.

    Kroenke doesn't speak out often but in this instance, his words carried weight.

    That said, Kroenke is a businessman. I don't use that as a pejorative term. I just don't believe Kroenke will be an easy touch in any stadium negotiations. The Rams need to improve their revenue flow at the facility to keep up with other NFL franchises. Kroenke may eventually drive a hard bargain. Still, it was encouraging to hear him speak so adamantly of his desire to find a way to make it work here.

    Rams majority owner Chip Rosenbloom also ended his period of silence on the Rams' sale. In an interview Tuesday, Rosenbloom wouldn't discuss the sale process, but he emphasized that he likes Khan and Kroenke and considers them friends. And Rosenbloom believes that either man would be a good owner for St. Louis.

    But Rosenbloom felt compelled to defend Kroenke on a personal level.

    "There's no reason to believe that Stan would be anything less than committed to St. Louis," Rosenbloom said. "He was instrumental in securing the Rams franchise for St. Louis along with my mom (Frontiere) and (Rams adviser) John Shaw. Stan has been our partner since we came to St. Louis. He's been by our side for 15 years."

    Pointing to Kroenke's roots, family and business interests in Missouri, Rosenbloom said he is puzzled by the backlash against Kroenke.

    "All of it points to a good relationship with St. Louis," Rosenbloom said. "I don't know why anyone would believe otherwise."

    Before the interview ended, Kroenke had one more item to address.

    The Rams will have the No. 1 overall pick in Thursday's first round of the NFL draft.

    "I'm excited," Kroenke said. "I can't wait to see what we do."

    Will the Rams draft Oklahoma quarterback Sam Bradford?

    Kroenke offered no clues or hints on that. But he did convey support for the Rams' future in St. Louis, and at this stage that's even more important.


  2. #2
    txramsfan's Avatar
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    Re: Kroenke: Rams would stay here ..

    Quoting Pulp Fiction: "You brought the Wolf? Why didn't you just say so?"

    Kind of how I feel now. Why didn't he just say so?

  3. #3
    Ramblin` Ram's Avatar
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    Re: Kroenke: Rams would stay here ..

    i`m guessing there may not be a third of the articles that came out stating things like "Kroenke can`t be trusted" etc..to state the truth that infact all these drama driven sports writers were wrong...but hey..Kreonke didn`t say he wanted to help build a succesfull NFL team..so i guess he`ll have to make a statement about that next week too..

    realise things have changed folks. have a little faith...to mistrust the current people who are within the franchise is like blaming your current partner because your ex cheated on you...it`s not justified and it`s not gonna bring any good.

  4. #4
    Truth's Avatar
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    Re: Kroenke: Rams would stay here ..

    Nice statement. I like how he left his options open with, "I'm going to attempt to do everything that I can to keep the Rams in St. Louis..." . I believe he will try to get a new stadium deal done. If not, I think he'll take his team to greener pastures.
    That's my story, and I'm sticking to it!!

  5. #5
    HUbison's Avatar
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    Re: Kroenke: Rams would stay here ..

    Quote Originally Posted by txramsfan View Post
    Quoting Pulp Fiction: "You brought the Wolf? Why didn't you just say so?"

    Kind of how I feel now. Why didn't he just say so?
    S***, n****......that's all you had to say!

    Man, I love that movie.


    Of course, now I have a picture of Stan Kroenke as Marsallus on the phone with Jules and Vincent.
    "Before the gates of excellence the high gods have placed sweat; long is the road thereto and rough and steep at first; but when the heights are reached, then there is ease, though grievously hard in the winning." --- Hesiod

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    Re: Kroenke: Rams would stay here ..

    When Stan Kroenke is perceived as anti-St. Louis, the world is truly entering end times. Kudos to the PD sports writers (sarcasm alert). They did a fine job of taking the mundane facts (Kroenke will exercise his option) and turning it into a fiasco that PD Rams fans will swallow hook/line/sinker (Kroenke is moving because he's a greedy capitalist pig that likes to screw the little guy that does not wipe his butt with thousand dollar bills).
    "Before the gates of excellence the high gods have placed sweat; long is the road thereto and rough and steep at first; but when the heights are reached, then there is ease, though grievously hard in the winning." --- Hesiod

  7. #7
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    Re: Kroenke: Rams would stay here ..

    Its funny, im listening to Brian Burwell rant on how Kroenke is still capable of diabolical behavior in this could be a ploy based on his "pattern of behavior".

    We'll see is all i can say. Regardless, my Rams will still in STL at least until 2014, by which time i myself won't even be living in Saint Louis anymore.

  8. #8
    txramsfan's Avatar
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    Re: Kroenke: Rams would stay here ..

    Well, Truth does make some valid points and Kroenke is still on the stadium committee in L.A. Kroenke hasn't come out and said they are definately staying....just that he will do all he can. Which could mean a number of things.

  9. #9
    AvengerRam's Avatar
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    Re: Kroenke: Rams would stay here ..

    If Bernie were reporting the story of Humpty Dumpty, his readers would be blogging about how the King's horses and the King's men conspired to push him off the wall.

    That is... of course... until Humpty Dumpty agreed to grant Bernie an interview.

  10. #10
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    Re: Kroenke: Rams would stay here ..

    Changes nothing. Without a stadium, this team is gone.

  11. #11
    molar_pistol is offline Registered User
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    Re: Kroenke: Rams would stay here ..

    Quote Originally Posted by AvengerRam View Post
    If Bernie were reporting the story of Humpty Dumpty, his readers would be blogging about how the King's horses and the King's men conspired to push him off the wall.

    That is... of course... until Humpty Dumpty agreed to grant Bernie an interview.
    that's mainly what i got out of this, bernie was the main guy stirring the pot on this issue and now he's acting as if talking about it is ridiculous..

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