Raiders owner Mark Davis intrigued by Las Vegas as NFL city
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) Owner Mark Davis has a sly response when it comes to his interest in moving the Oakland Raiders to Sin City.
''First off, what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas,'' he cracked with a grin Friday.
As hard as Davis tried to keep the attention Friday on an announcement about Oakland's Nov. 21 Monday night game against the Texans in Mexico City, the relocation issue came up in a hurry.
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell pledged Friday ''to do everything possible'' to help Oakland and the San Diego Chargers work to get new stadiums in their current markets.
''The league supports both of these teams, but we are working very hard with not only the teams, but the communities to try to find a solution that works for everybody,'' Goodell said at his annual Super Bowl week news conference. ''This has to work for the communities, and it has to work for the teams long term.''
The Rams have moved to Los Angeles from St. Louis and will start playing there for the 2016 season. The Chargers are staying put for the 2016 season, but chairman Dean Spanos has an option to join the Rams at a new stadium being built in Inglewood if the city and team can't work out a deal.
The Raiders also wanted to move to Los Angeles, and Davis might now look at other cities if the franchise can't work out a stadium deal with Oakland.
''I think it's great that Dean Spanos and his family said, `We want to make this work in San Diego,''' Goodell said. ''They have an incredibly attractive option in Los Angeles but they decided, `We're going to go and try to make this work in San Diego,' and we will do everything we can to support that. The same's true for Mark Davis. Mark Davis has a lot of options.''
Davis said he spoke with Goodell this week, but wouldn't elaborate on their conversation. The team's lease at the Coliseum expires Feb. 17 and the Raiders have been in talks with the Joint Powers Authority that runs the Coliseum about extending the deal for one year.
In terms of Goodell's remarks Friday, Davis said, ''What the Commissioner said made sense.''
''That's great news,'' Davis said. ''I believe he's going to do whatever he can. I'd love to. We're the Oakland Raiders right now, that's where it's at.''
But no doubt Las Vegas has him intrigued.
Davis said Las Vegas is ''absolutely a possible NFL city,'' then added:
''Again, there's timing,'' Davis said. ''It's absolutely an NFL city. It's an international city, it's a global city. The Raiders are a global brand, so it's got potential.''
And no, Davis, hasn't reconsidered his thoughts on sharing with the San Francisco 49ers $1.3 billion, second-year Levi's Stadium - host of Sunday's 50th Super Bowl between Carolina and Denver.
''Again, I just don't think it fits the Raiders. All along and this is the one thing I will say, and I'll say it again for the 50th time, there's three words that mean something to me in a stadium, in a location, and that's ingress, egress and parking,'' he said.
''The Raiders on game day, if you're around our stadium, if you see our parking lot before the game, the tailgating, it's probably the largest non-denominational gathering on a Sunday morning that you'll ever find, and I'm not going to give that up. That's just part of the Raider game day experience. I just can't give that up.''
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