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San Diego Chargers Forced to Cancel Practice, Evacuate Homes as Fires Burn Southern California

As fires are tearing their way through Southern California, destroying countless homes, the impact is being felt in the sports world as well.

The San Diego Chargers canceled practice today, as many players and coaches have homes in the path of the flames and are being forced to evacuate, including LaDainian Tomlinson, Shawne Merriman and Luis Castillo. So far, over 250,000 people have been forced to flee the flames.

“There’s nothing we could do today,” coach Norv Turner said.”We have a dozen guys who have evacuated their houses and have stuff they’ve got to deal with.”

The Chargers are waiting to see what will happen, but are already making plans to hold practice in Arizona tomorrow. The parking lot at Qualcomm Stadium has become an evacuation center for thousands, so it is looking more and more like Sunday’s game between the Chargers and Houston Texans will have to be moved.

Back in 2003, when fires similarly affected San Diego, the Chargers moved a Monday night contest to Sun Devil Stadium in Tempe. While it would be assumed that University of Phoenix Stadium would be the first choice of venue, it is currently scheduled to be holding a motorcycle show for all of next weekend, so Sun Devil Stadium could be an option once again.

While it does seem a bit trivial to be discussing sports at a time like this, as we have seen several times in the past, continuing to play games can help a city start to heal and take their mind off their troubles, if even just for a few hours.

Our thoughts are with everyone who is being affected by the fires. If you are in Southern California, we hope that you & your loved ones are safe and sound, and that they get the fires under control as soon as possible.

250,000 Flee Raging Wildfires in San Diego (CNN)
Breaking News on Wildfires (SignOnSanDiego)
Fire Prompts Cancellation of Practice (San Diego Union-Tribune)
Chargers Consider Traveling to Arizona (San Diego Union-Tribune)

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