Mark Davis isn’t celebrating Vegas move “like I would like to be”
Raiders owner Mark Davis would like to be celebrating his move to Las Vegas like a guy spending a weekend in Las Vegas, but that isn’t happening. According to Mark Davis.
“I’m not celebrating anything like I would like to be,” Davis told 95.7 The Game on Tuesday, via NBC Sports Bay Area. “We’re building a world-class venue in the entertainment capital of the world that will be great for Super Bowls and big events, but I still have a feeling for the fans in the Bay Area. I’ve met with a number of them, and anything I say isn’t going to soothe them. It makes this whole thing bittersweet.”
Although the powers-that-be in Oakland made a last-ditch effort to persuade the team not to move, Davis made it clear that, if they’d begun the process sooner, something may have worked out.
“The only people Oakland was in competition with was themselves,” Davis said. ”If they could’ve come up with a deal that could’ve given us the land or leased it at reasonable terms and gave us the infrastructure and ability to find a developer to bridge the funding gap, we may have been able to do something on that site. I believe it’s a phenomenal [location]. Sundays at that stadium are the greatest . . . Plans the city had would downgrade that game day experience.”
While Davis surely would like the big-picture blame to be directed at the local politicians, he wants any residual blame that could be directed at the team to be focused on him.
“If there’s blame to be given, it should be aimed at me,” Davis said. “I’m the one who made the decision. My dream is for us to play out the next two, possibly three seasons in Oakland. I’d like to bring a championship to Oakland. I’m hoping that, in time, emotions will dry and that we’ll be able to do something of that nature. . . . I feel like I should say I understand that there is anger and disappointment, and that it should be pointed at me and not a Derek Carr, Khalil Mack and Jack Del Rio. Those guys want to bring a championship to the Bay Area.”
Raiders fans in Oakland would prefer not to have a championship in the next two years but their team for the next 20 and beyond. Maybe they can now hope that, in 20 years or so, the team will return again, like it did after more than a decade in L.A.