Nobody likes moving.
Packing up a two-bedroom apartment for a move across town is one of life’s great headaches. Moving an NFL game from Mexico City to Los Angeles on less than a week’s notice? Well that’s another level entirely.
The NFL announced Tuesday that Monday night’s game between the Los Angeles Rams and Kansas City Chiefs scheduled to be played in Mexico City will take place at L.A. Memorial Coliseum instead. It turns out that Shakira didn’t leave the turf in prime playing shape after a concert, raising safety concerns for players.
The move raises a number of questions.
Who gets tickets for Monday’s game?
The Rams announced on Tuesday that season ticket holders have first dibs on their normal seats, and have until Thursday to claim them. Season ticket holders will also have the option of buying four additional seats before the general public in a Wednesday morning presale. Tickets will be made available to the general public Wednesday afternoon.
The team is also making available thousands of complementary tickets to first responders and victims of the wildfires that have ravaged Southern California in recent days. The Rams told Yahoo Sports that they will be working with local groups like the L.A. and Ventura County fire departments and city officials to distribute those tickets.
What about the people who bought tickets in Mexico?
Details are sparse. The Rams announced that the NFL will announce reimbursement procedures for people who bought tickets for Estadio Azteca in coming days. Whether there will be any consideration given to costs for people who made travel plans is unknown.
Fans who planned to travel are stuck with the unfortunate decision of whether to continue with their Mexico vacation or to make plans for Los Angeles. Or neither.
What about the teams?
The Rams moved to Colorado Springs, Colorado, for the week to train for the high elevation of playing in Mexico City, which sits at 7,382 feet above sea level. The Orange County Register reports that those plans won’t change. The team is already in Colorado. With everything in place and wildfires continuing to wreak havoc in and around Los Angeles, the team will remain in Colorado until Saturday.
Both teams made a request to play at the Denver Broncos’ Mile High Stadium last week in anticipation of the Mexico City game. ESPN reports that those requests were rejected to not give one team an advantage over the other. (Each team has played a game in Denver this season; each team won their game against the Broncos.)
The Chiefs are preparing as normal.
What about Mexico City?
The NFL has staged games in Mexico City the past two years and has an agreement to continue to play there until 2021. Losing the game is a financial blow for the city as the 87,000-seat Estadio Azteca will sit empty instead of hosting the biggest game of the NFL season on Monday. How significant a blow that is is unknown.
The NFL will also have to address that insurance is in place that a repeat of the field conditions that forced Monday’s relocation won’t happen again.
As for merchandising, an opportunity has been missed for the NFL, Rams and Chiefs.
But items like the earrings posted above should make for some nice collector’s items for whomever gets their hands on them.
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