Chargers’ Director of Public Relations Bill Johnston came out with the now almost infamous “Take A Chill Pill” article.
The blog currently has almost 400 comments from fans, #ChillPill was trending on Twitter for the last week, and essentially every San Diego news outlet has weighed in on the post at least once, in one form or another.
Today, staffers at the Los Angeles Times threw in their two cents.
Sports writer T.J. Simers brought up an interesting ‘conspiracy theory’ (his words).
After one fan’s comment saying this post was the beginning of the Chargers moving to L.A. Simers wrote, “It worked for the Rams when making their case to leave Anaheim. And to keep the conspiracy theory going for San Diego radio, remember that the Rams' PR guy at the time used to be Johnston's mentor.”
There is a plan on the table to build a stadium downtown in East Village. The stadium would be right next to the Padres’ Petco Park and cost about $1 billion.
Currently the city is working through bureaucratic red tape for Tailgate Park, a 1,040-space parking lot.
Mark Fabiani is heading up the stadium effort for the Chargers told U-T San Diego in September about the impossibility of a new stadium without Tailgate Park.
“Without Tailgate Park the site would simply be too small to host a stadium, let alone a Super Bowl,” he said. “In addition, of course, if we are no longer looking at a site downtown, that has a cascading impact throughout the financing plan. The downtown site would allow us to free up the Qualcomm site and perhaps the Sports Arena site, thereby generating substantial, brand new revenues for the city. Without the use of one or both of those sites, the financing plan would look much different.”
Is calling this post a conspiracy theory for the team moving a little bit too much?
The Chargers suffered two despicable, embarrassing, heart-breaking losses in the last several weeks. Fans have every right to be upset about that, and sports media has to do their job of analyzing it. The fact that last Sunday the team had a bye meant there was no new material coming in. The games kept getting rehashed time and time again, simply because there was plenty to talk about and frankly, nothing new was going on.
But maybe Johnston was not completely unjustified in throwing in his two cents as well. Everyone else, including the almost 400 fans who commented on that blog directly, and the hundreds who commented via other news and social media sites, had a chance to say what they wanted to say about the games, the team, the coach, the quarterback, and anything else Chargers.
Was it done in the right way? Maybe not. Was belittling the fans emotions and passion the right tone to take? Definitely not. Should he have tried to cool his own emotions before banging out an angry response to criticism? Probably.
But saying the team has a conspiracy theory simply because Johnston let his emotions fly along with the rest of San Diego may be a bit much.
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