Messiest Franchise Moves in History
The Oakland Raiders plan to make the move to Sin City in either the 2019 or 2020 season to become the Las Vegas Raiders after sour negotiations with their home city. While moving cities is not exactly unusual for a professional sports team, they are rarely dignified exits. Let us take a look at some of the more destructive relocations in sports.
The Dodgers- Brooklyn to Los Angeles
Many consider the east as the home of baseball. Teams like the Red Sox and the Brooklyn Dodgers helped to solidify baseball as a major sports industry. So when the legendary Dodgers left the city, residents felt like they were losing a piece of their heritage. Unsurprisingly, Brooklynites despised Team Manager Walter O’Malley after the move.
Raiders- Oakland to Los Angeles
Another nasty move by the Pirates from the Bay, this one actually had to be settled in court. After attempts to renovate the Raiders’ home stadium fell through (sound familiar?), owner Al Davis made efforts to move the team to Los Angeles. The move required a three-fourths majority approval from league owners to pass, which it ultimately did not receive. Refusing to take no for an answer, Davis took legal action, winning the right to relocate. However, their dismal performances in L.A. lead to a quick return to Oakland.
Browns- Cleveland to Baltimore
One of the most controversial relocations in the NFL, this move saw huge backlash. It all stared when Browns Manager Art Modell felt dissatisfied with having to share revenue with the Cleveland baseball team, the Indians. Convinced that attendance would not suffer from their absence, Modell agreed to help construct a facility for the Cleveland Indians. The Browns finances quickly plummeted after the departure of the Indians, and with Modell’s request to renovate the Cleveland Coliseum denied, it was announced mid-season that the Browns would move to Baltimore. Fans rioted and celebrities like Drew Carrey came to protest. This messy exchange lead to the first great compromise in sports history and the team has not been the same since.
How about you? Do any catastrophic moves to mind? Let us know in the comments!
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