This really shouldn’t surprise anyone that has some understanding of the situation. Any time a professional sports entity finds itself creating a relationship with a casino mogul, there promises to be some rough patches.
Now that the Oakland Raiders are working with Sheldon Adelson, the chairman and CEO of Las Vegas Sands Corporation, to help build a new state of the art stadium in the desert metropolis, this whole thing is magnified even further.
According to Bleacher Report’s Jason Cole the NFL could very well have an issue regarding a revenue-sharing agreement between the casino head and the Raiders.
— Jason Cole (@JasonCole62) October 10, 2016
There’s so many different layers to this.
First off, suggesting that the NFL would have an issue with getting into bed with a man of Adelson’s ilk shouldn’t be too surprising.
Considering he’s one of the most successful tycoons in the gambling industry, there’s past relationships that don’t necessarily paint him in the best of lights.
These relationships include the likes of felonist former lobbyist Jack Abramoff and disgraced former House Majority Leader Tom Delay (more on that here).
While Adelson has never been implicated of any wrongdoing, he has in the past run in some pretty shady circles.
It was less than a month ago a panel in control of approving stadium funding did just that on a unanimous vote.
This furthered the idea that the Raiders would end up in Las Vegas. With it now being into the hands of the state legislature, a final vote in the Raiders’ and Adelson’s favor could make relocation imminent.
Revenue share talks are a big deal. The NFL has in the past shown an unwillingness to get involved in a relationship with those who have direct ties to the gambling world.
If Adelson is given a greater slice of the pie than the league would like, that’d be an issue for the suits in New York City.
And while some certain big-name team owners have thrown their support behind the Raiders relocating to Vegas, one has to think the league office would at least be a bit apprehensive.
None of this is to say the Raiders can’t work out a deal to the league’s liking. The process of relocation is potentially hitting its final stages. If the NFL had shown itself to be a major opponent of this relationship, neither side would have taken it this far.
Instead, it’s more about understanding that the process won’t be without issues. It won’t be as clean as the Rams moving to Los Angeles. This is something that should be noted as all sides move forward on a deal.