Richmond — When the mayor is standing outside the entertainment center on Thursday Take the stone Do what he has rarely done in the past few years: he publicly praised the Washington football team. He said that the relationship between the city and the NFL team has evolved from “confrontation” to that he now publicly advocates for the team to extend their stay in the city.
After its initial eight-year contract expires in 2020, Washington And the city Richmond A one-year agreement was agreed to allow Burgundy and the Golden Team to return to the town for a five-day (Tuesday to Saturday) training camp.
Team chairman Jason WrightOn the other hand, there was almost no promise, telling reporters that looking for a home for next year’s training camp has not yet “breakthrough priority list”, despite expressing the team’s willingness to engage in dialogue.
“This is our top priority,” Stoney Say. “We know that the residents of this great city Richmond Like to have the Washington football team in town. With this new regime in charge of the Washington football team, I believe that great things will happen. ”
Wright It is suggested that the team can influence the city in many ways, even if there is no practice there.
“We are actively considering how to become ubiquitous in the area where our fans are located,” Wright Say. “This can be a community partnership like this. It could mean the existence of entities like our training facilities. But I know that in this field, we will establish basic partnerships in some form or form.”
Both spoke at the Hotch Keysfield Community Center, which is Washington Commit to invest USD 75,000 from the team’s charitable foundation for the renovation. The money will be used to upgrade the play area and other facilities of the center.
So what has changed?After all, it was only a few years ago that Stoney and other city officials Washington More than the $500,000 that the city pays to the team each year. “For me, if you are one of the richest teams in the world, there is no reason for this city Richmond Pay cash for the team,” Stoney Said in 2018.
Since then, the terms of the contract have changed. Even before the initial deal expired, the team and the city government reached an agreement to reduce financial contributions in April 2020. Washington Not to Richmond For camps affected by the epidemic, when negotiating a one-year agreement this year, the two parties agreed to cancel the clause.
instead, Washington According to the mayor’s spokesperson, it was the person who paid the city’s fees: the franchise paid $100,000 for a five-day stay.
Stoneney attributed all this to the change in leadership. The old deal was made under the leadership of former team chairman Bruce Allen, but the current deal is made under his leadership. Wright.
“People and personnel matters are very important,” Stoney Say. “In my field of work, personnel equals policy, because these people will determine the culture and organizational behavior. Jason Wright And coach (Ron) Rivera, I have seen how they hug Richmond. “
Stoney Say he Feel the “love” from Washington. he Say he Will not negotiate through the media, but added he Hope the team stays for more than five days. In the past, the team stayed for about two weeks before returning to Ashburn.
“a lot of Richmond Residents feel that we are being used by one of the richest affluent teams in the world.” Stoney Say. “So it’s different now—that Richmond It’s the recipient of the dollar, not the dollar we give it-which shows that they value their relationship here, and they value the fans. “
Wright Said that the team’s training camp home is the best for Rivera and his players. This is Rivera’s first long stay in the city, even though his team traveled when he was coach of the Carolina Panthers.
Washington Also looking for a new stadium, where a new practice facility may be built next to it-reflecting other settings in the league, such as Dallas and New York (the Giants).
“When we get there, we will get there,” Wright Speaking of determining the location of the future training camp. “We have some other time-critical things happening now.”