The Black Hole Is Disappearing

Goodbye, goodbye again.

The National Football League’s Oakland Raiders franchise will remain in name for the remainder of the 2019 season but the Oakland part of the brand can be dropped after Sunday’s game as the franchise for the second time in Oakland history says goodbye to the Coliseum and the Bay Area. More than a year ago, Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf admitted what has been known for a long time about the Mark Davis led Oakland Raiders and the proposed new stadium negotiations between the city and the NFL team. Davis had no interest in building a stadium on Oakland’s terms.  Oakland’s starting position was well we can build a new facility but you, Mark Davis, had to pay down debt on the existing stadium. Davis also wanted Major League Baseball’s A’s evicted from the Oakland Coliseum and refused to pay the 1995 debt. Schaaf was also critical of the National Football League for not pushing Davis into serious negotiations with Oakland city officials. Davis is moving the team to Las Vegas. Davis’s regular season operation will be in Nevada by 2020 in a new stadium that will be subsidized to the tune of $750 million by that state’s governor’s office and the state legislature. They found the money through taxing mechanisms. Nevada is helping to pay for Davis’s home office.

There are questions left over starting with what happens to the Oakland Coliseum debt that has to be paid for the 1995 renovations that got Al Davis back into the building after a 13-year sojourn in Los Angeles. The NBA’s Golden State Warriors franchise left Oakland after the 2018-19 season as Warriors’ ownership opted for greener pastures across the bay in San Francisco. Oakland has lost two of its three big league teams. Oakland could not afford the price of being in the big leagues. The Black Hole is disappearing.