It seemed impossible just a few years ago, but reports are beginning to surface that the Oakland Raiders are moving to Las Vegas.
Oakland Raiders owner Mark Davis has made gambling news, and his intentions clear. He wants to move his team to Las Vegas, and has even offered to pay $500 million for a new stadium. Two years ago this would have seemed absurd, but today it seems like a real possibility.
The proposed stadium is estimated to cost about $1.4 billion. The Sands Corp, which owns three casinos in Las Vegas, has also offered $150 million. The rest of the money would be generated by tourism taxes. It will likely take over three years to build, and would need to be approved by the Nevada Tourism Infrastructure Committee, the state legislature, and the NFL.
European soccer star David Beckham was also present at the meeting alongside Davis. He weighed in on the potential Raider move, stating, “To bring a great organization like the Raiders to Las Vegas is amazing, but it’s bigger than that.” Beckham does promotional work with the Sands Corp, and is confident that an NFL team in Las Vegas would be a big boost for Nevada’s economy.
Mark Davis has claimed the Oakland Raiders are moving to Las Vegas if Nevada approves the financing
“I looked Las Vegas square in the eye and promised them I’d move there if they approved financing,” Davis said Wednesday. “And I intend to keep my word.” The Raider’s owner is confident that his team will develop a strong Las Vegas fan base, and could change the way many people view Sin City.
For years, the NFL would not even consider allowing a team based out of Vegas, but they have recently softened their stance. NFL commissioner Roger Goodell gave his opinion in February by stating, “Ultimately, it’s the ownership’s decision. It requires 24 of the 32 owners to approve any relocation to any market.” He maintains that if the owners agree to the move, the NFL will not get in the way. A high-ranking NFL executive was even quoted recently saying, “Las Vegas would be a great home for the Raiders.”
It is now up to Las Vegas to decide on whether they want to fund the Raider immigration. If that decision is yes, then expect to see the Las Vegas Raiders play their first game in just a couple years. Whether or not the Oakland Raiders are moving to Las Vegas, this entire process has been a big step forward for the NFL.
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