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The Oakland Raiders Divorce is Coming

The Oakland Raiders Divorce is Coming
Raiders owner Mark Davis with fans as part of presentation by which the club would move from Oakland to Las Vegas. Photo: The Associated Press

National Football League Commissioner Roger Goodell has drawn up the divorce papers and cleared the way for his 30 bosses and the Green Bay Packers Board of Directors to allow Mark Davis and his Raiders ownership partners to move the business headquarters from Oakland to Las Vegas.

Goodell’s letter to Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf on Friday, which was obtained by many media outlets, is not as nasty as NBA Commissioner David Stern’s comment of “You Blew It” to New Jersey politicians about a decade ago when Nets ownership and state elected officials could not agree to a new arena deal. That opened the door for Nets ownership to move to Brooklyn. Goodell’s letter was a parting shot as he is done negotiating.

“The material that we reviewed earlier today confirms that key issues that we have identified as threshold considerations are simply not resolvable in a reasonable time and in that respect, the information sent today does not present a proposal that is clear and specific, actionable in a reasonable time frame, and free of major contingencies.”

The letter makes clear that Goodell is not pleased with the latest Oakland proposal, but the communication does not mention that Oakland and California are not matching the Nevada public money giveaway of $750 million to help construction Davis and his partners a Las Vegas stadium. The $750 million is the largest public subsidy ever to be granted by a municipality to a sports ownership group.

Goodell also seems to be annoyed that Oakland is trying to find a solution and build a baseball stadium for the Athletics. Goodell did soften the letter somewhat at the end by writing “despite all of these efforts, ours and yours, we have not yet identified a viable solution. It is disappointing to me and our clubs to have come to that conclusion.”

The divorce is coming.

By Evan Weiner For The Politics Of Sports Business

This article was republished with permission from the original publisher, Evan Weiner.


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