Raider nation lives on

Marino Dominguez, Staff Writer

The Oakland Raiders have been one of the most iconic franchises in the history of American football, known for their dedicated and menacing fanbase and intimidating coliseum. Raider Nation had plans to move to Las Vegas, the casino capital, over the 2016 season and officially filed for relocation on January 19, 2017.

But now the financial aspect of the $1.9 billion dome has hit a brick wall: multi-billionaire Sheldon Adelson, who committed $650 million, has pulled out from the Vegas deal, leaving the franchise with a $1.1 billion bill, including what the franchise already offered to pay.

With the Raiders in a standoff with the city of Oakland and the NFL for the last few years, relocation has been imminent. The possible move two years ago made life-long fans nostalgic for the times in Los Angeles where the Raiders won one of their three Superbowls. The NFL subsequently offered the Raiders $100 million to revoke their relocation papers to Los Angeles, so the organization happily obliged.

In the following months, the Raiders began a record season, compiling a 12-4 record with nearly 6,000 yards and 47 touchdowns — a season that raised questions of the reality of a new stadium for the Silver and Black. Answers came when they were kicked from the playoffs after Derek Carr was injured and Mark Davis, majority owner of the team, officially filed for relocation to Las Vegas.

NFL fans were not shocked, as the file for relocation was foreseen, but it was a sad moment for many who had seen the recognizable Oakland-Alameda Coliseum in its prime years, hosting countless rivalry games and playoff matches.

But all this has changed since Adelson’s announcement of withdrawal: “Regrettably, we will no longer be involved in any facet of the stadium discussion.”

In response to Adelson’s withdrawal from the deal, Goldman Sachs decided their partnership in the stadium would be unfavorable and also pulled out of all financial obligations for the dome.

The Las Vegas Raiders plan is dead. Even if the Raiders were to find new investors, fans must also keep in mind that the league is “Shared Revenue,” meaning the revenue collected from all teams is shared among all owners. For the Raiders to move to Las Vegas, it would require 26 votes in the league meeting. The opposing movement says that the revenue would not be enough to merit 26 votes from the owners, since about 20,000 people would have to fly to Las Vegas every week to fill the seats of the new stadium.

Things are changing in Oakland. The Raiders are playing competitive football again, and soon look to be the biggest threat in the AFC. The 2016 season was a glimpse of hope for us, and barring injuries, the 2017 season is looking like one for the record books.

So, attention all Raider fans: the reality of the “Oakland” Raiders is revived!