The U-T has a story today (January 20) with the headline: "Chargers should follow Lucchino's trail." The gist is that if the Chargers had a hustler like Larry Lucchino, a former Padres president (1995–2001), the football team could get a new stadium.
The U-T may not know that Lucchino has completely changed his tune. When he was in Baltimore and San Diego, he believed the only way to save a team was to have taxpayers build a new ballpark. But when he showed up with the Boston Red Sox early in the 2000s, he switched completely.
In 2012, Fenway Park, home of the Red Sox (of which he is president) had its 100th year. Lucchino celebrated the decision to fix the old park and not beg taxpayers for a new one. In 2010, Lucchino was quoted in the Wall Street Journal boasting that Red Sox fans would get their century-old stadium without taking "a dime of public money."
As the Journal pointed out how illogical public funding of privately owned stadiums is, Lucchino said, "We knew the perils of asking for public money." He went on to say that fans "get annoyed when teams ask taxpayers to build a stadium, and then raise ticket and concession prices on the very people who paid for it." The Padres did just that.
The intellect of the Boston Brahmins must have rubbed off on Lucchino. On February 18 of 2011, Lucchino bragged that the Red Sox finished ten years of improvements to Fenway Park, spending $285 million of their own money. Fenway Park would last another 40 to 50 years, engineers told Lucchino. In 2012, he was quoted saying how excited he was to see Fenway Park hit age 100.
Maybe if he were back in San Diego, Lucchino would realize the truth: neither San Diego nor the Spanos family can afford to contribute a dime to a new stadium.