Good-Bye Oakland Raiders, Hello Las Vegas
Good-bye Oakland Raiders, but not this season; not next season, and the location for 2019 has not been determined. Everything has been approved for the move from Oakland to Las Vegas. However, owner Mark David said the new Nevada stadium will not open until 2020. The owner said this is an irresistible opportunity “to build a world-class stadium in the entertainment capital of the world.” He also emphasized to fans “that it wasn’t the players, it wasn’t the coaches that made this decision, but it was me that made it.”
Financing in Place for New Stadium
Although the move had been anticipated for months part of the move had to do with financing of the new stadium. Nevada taxpayers voted last year to build their Las Vegas stadium authorizing $750 million while Davis is putting up $500 million. The remainder of the cost will come from Bank of America who has committed to the financing.
The Oakland team came about in 1960 as a part of the old American Football League. They moved to Los Angeles in 1982 and then returned to Oakland in 1995. The team won Super Bowls XI and XV in Oakland. They also won Super Bowl XVIII in Los Angeles.
The city of Oakland, in a last-minute effort to keep the Raiders, made an offer which was declined by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. Mayor Libby Schaff sent a letter saying, “The NFL is more than a business. You have an obligation to recognize that professional football teams are the lifeblood, culture and identity of the places where they play.”