The Raiders are applying to relocate to Las Vegas, and reaction to this decision has been mixed, especially in Oakland.
“Well, it depends on who you talk to,” former Raider and current Raiders color commentator Lincoln Kennedy said on CBS Sports Radio’s Gio and Jones. “From the organization standpoint, they think it’s a huge opportunity to get their own stadium – that’s been long overdue – to find a place that they can truly cal their home and move forward with the Ring of Honor, the museums, all the things that every other team in the National Football League has been able to do with their own space. But if you talk to the fans, they’re a little disgruntled. It’s not fair for any city to lose its team, no matter who it is, especially a city like Oakland. It’s looking like they’re probably going to lose the Warriors as well. (They’re) going over across the Bay, which is a different sentiment altogether. But for the most part, it just depends on who you talk to, whether it’s Raider Nation or the Oakland Raiders themselves.”
Four-time Super Bowl champion Ronnie Lott is working with local investors to fund a $1.25 billion, 55,000-seat stadium to try to keep the team in Oakland.
“I heard there was some progression and that some things were going to go through, but it’s nothing definitive,” Kennedy said. “Now the best way to explain it is that Ronnie Lott plan might be sort of a fall-back plan if the Vegas thing doesn’t come through. (Mark Davis has) got to have 24 votes in order to move the team, and I don’t know if they’re there yet. I don’t know if they have enough of the owners collectively. There are guys like the great Arthur Blank who question whether or not Vegas or Nevada financially could handle an NFL team. So I don’t know if he has enough votes there, but they’re going to make the proposal to the NFL in March.”
Kennedy, 45, played for Oakland from 1996-2003 and was a three-time Pro Bowler. He wants the Raiders to remain in Oakland, but he knows it’s not that simple.
“I would rather have the team stay,” he said. “However, I’ve felt this for a long time: I think that the Raiders deserve to have their own stadium. There’s really no reason why a team that iconic to the NFL has to share a stadium with a baseball team. So it’s a shame that the Raiders are the only ones to do it. Between San Diego and Oakland, you have two of the most worn-down, dilapidated stadiums in the country, and they happen to be in California. So it’s sad that it’s happening, but I do believe the Raiders deserve their own palatial estate, and they don’t have that anywhere in California.”