The Oakland Raiders have already filed relocation paperwork with the NFL. They have also filed for the Las Vegas Raiders trademark. Needless to say, Mark Davis and Co. figured that the process was playing out in their favor.
After all, the Nevada State Legislature had approved $750 million in public financing for the desert venue. The team also had Las Vegas Sands Corporation CEO Sheldon Adelson bankrolling a large sum of cash behind the scenes.
Everything was going swimmingly.
That’s until Adelson and his family shocked the football world by pulling out as investors in the project on Monday. This left open questions about what was going to happen with the Raiders’ plan to relocate to Vegas.
At that very same point, the Raiders made it known publicly that they had another potential partner in the project to take Adelson’s place. According to the team, that came in the form of investement banking company Goldman Sachs.
Unfortunately for the Raiders, it is now being reported that Sachs involvement in the project was depended on working with Adelson.
Source: Goldman Sachs deal to finance Raiders stadium contingent on Sheldon Adelson involvement. Without Adelson, there isn't a deal.
— Nathan Fenno (@nathanfenno) January 31, 2017
This means that there’s absolutely no deal on the table for the Raiders to bankroll the $650 million that Adelson had committed to contributing. Without that money, relocation to Vegas is dead in the water.
Adelson is a major power player in the desert metroplis. Not only is Sachs involvement reportedly dependent on the billionaire, the state’s legislature voted to approve public financing with the understanding that he would be a key cog behind the scenes. It’s not yet known if that’s going to fall through.
What we do know is that the Raiders’ situation in Oakland is not sustainable long term. That’s been made clear by Davis and Co. It’s also been made clear by the lack of action from government officials in Northern California.
Without a viable plan coming to fruition in Las Vegas, the Raiders are left playing the role Tom Hanks portrayed in “The Terminal.” They are a team without a real home.