Stan Kroenke is one of the richest owners in the NFL and is the presiding owner of recent championship teams in the NBA, NHL and NFL. With his latest business venture, Kroenke could play a significant role in more pro sports coming to San Diego.
After the Los Angeles Chargers relocated, moving into the stadium funded by Kroenke, San Diego was left with only one team in the four major professional sports. While the San Diego Padres are beloved in the city, there’s an audience for an even bigger imprint on sports.
San Diego is a top-30 media market in the United States and has one of the highest average household incomes on the West Coast. Paired with the location, weather and other desirable features, the city becomes a popular option when evaluating new places for expansion.
- Stan Kroenke net worth (Forbes): $12.9 billion
However, the lack of a modern stadium has proven to be a big problem. It played a role in the Chargers leaving and is part of the reason why neither the NHL nor the NBA has a team based in one of the most popular cities in the U.S. However, all of that could soon change.
According to Front Office Sports, Kroenke’s real estate group is now taking over a new arena project in San Diego. Named “Midway Rising’ the site would include a 16,000-seat arena, thousands of new housing units, retail space and a hotel. Most importantly, it could all be completed by 2025.
A 16,000-seat stadium won’t be enough to entice the NFL. However, the average capacity of NBA arenas is just under 19,000 and a majority of NHL stadiums seat between 15,000-20,000 people.
With Las Vegas picking up the Oakland Athletics, giving it two teams in the four major sports, San Diego could begin to emerge as a popular destination site for future league expansion. Both the NBA and NHL are open to expansion in the future, with both leagues likely to add two teams.
If Kroenke’s latest business venture creates a state-of-the-art stadium and a surrounding area that can generate a lot of interest, San Diego could push itself toward the front of the line for an expansion team. While Kroenke wouldn’t get to own the expansion team, unless he sold the Denver Nuggets or Colorado Avalanche, Kroenke Sports & Entertainment could still play a massive role in San Diego’s reach in professional sports finally expanding.