Roger Noll, emeritus economics professor at Stanford, often considered the top expert on pro-sports economics, says, "Expect the Chargers to stay in San Diego." Noll made the statement in an op-ed he wrote today (January 22) in the Los Angeles Times.
One reason: "If the Chargers come to town, the prices the Rams can charge for tickets, luxury boxes, and personal seat licenses will have to drop a bit. The Rams probably will then seek compensation from the Chargers in high rent or control of some revenue sources from the Chargers games," says Noll, who is frequently quoted in the Reader.
Then, if the National Football League seeks a relocation fee of, say $550 million (as Rams owner Stan Kroenke is supposed to have paid), the Chargers relocating to L.A. "has very long odds."
Perhaps because he is a gentleman, Noll doesn't mention why these costs would deter the Chargers. It's because the Spanos family doesn't have anywhere near the wealth of Kroenke, who is building a stadium worth between $2 billion and $3 billion, surrounded by real estate development —residential units, shopping mall, office, buildings, and a casino (though the NFL says it opposes gambling).
The Spanos family is worth about $1.6 billion, and most of that is in ownership of the Chargers. Kroenke and his wife, a Walton, are probably worth around $12 billion or more.
Noll expects the Chargers to remain in San Diego, but "if they move, it's more plausible that they'll end up in San Antonio or Las Vegas. Or even St. Louis," he writes.