The city of Oakland loves their Raiders, but they must learn that if they love something, they have to let it go. NFL owners almost unanimously voted for the Oakland Raiders to move to Las Vegas.
Miami Dolphins owner Stephen Ross was the only vote that opposed the relocation. He believed that not enough was done to keep the team in Oakland.
“I believe when you own a team, you’re a steward for the city,” Ross said.
The decision brought mixed feelings from members the franchise to the political figures of Oakland. Mayor Libby Schaaf vied for the franchise to stay, asking the owners to delay the vote in order for her to pen a deal for new stadium at the Oakland Coliseum site.
The franchise is staying until their new stadium is completed, their first season as the ‘Las Vegas Raiders’ will possibly be in 2020. Oakland councilmen Larry Reid is ready for the Raiders to leave sooner than that.
“I don’t want them here,” Reid said. “They can go down to Santa Clara and play.”
Plans for a $1.9 billion stadium will continue, the Raiders will share the 65,000-seat stadium with UNLV. Funding for the domed stadium is made up of $750 million in public money and a loan of $650 million from Bank of America.
For years, franchises avoided Las Vegas in fear of gamblers fraternizing with players and officials with the hopes of altering games in the name of bets. However, the stigma has been lifted due to the growth of gambling nationally.
The Raiders will not be alone, for the Golden Knights N.H.L. team will be competing in Las Vegas this year.
Raiders quarterback Derek Carr expressed his feelings on Twitter, noting how he was “overwhelmed with emotion” at the result of the vote.
“I don’t know how we should feel. I feel the pain of our fans in Oakland. I also see the joy on the faces of our new fans in Las Vegas,” Carr stated in the post. “Oakland, our team loves you, and my family and I love you.”
New York Giants wide receiver Brandon Marshall noted how he enjoyed playing football amongst the atmosphere at the Oakland Coliseum.
“People always asked me what was my favorite place to play,” Marshall said. “It was always Oakland. I love the black hole.”