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Raiders owner: 'Right now I am focused on Las Vegas'

Posted at 10:10 PM, Jun 03, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-07 15:01:45-04
The owner of the Oakland Raiders maintains that if Las Vegas builds a $1.4 billion stadium the team will come.
Mark Davis said he likes to do one thing at a time when asked about an effort by former players to get a stadium deal off the ground in Oakland.
"Right now I am focused on Las Vegas and if Vegas can come through with what we are talking about then we will become the Raiders of Las Vegas," Davis said.
The Raiders owner talked about a potential move before attending the Gridiron Greats Hall of Fame induction ceremony.
Former Raiders’ Cliff Branch and Daryle Lamonica were among those being honored.
The former teammates had differing opinions on the move.
"I hope the team stays in Oakland only that is because that is where I was born and raised," Lamonica said.
"Las Vegas wants the Raiders, the Raiders want Las Vegas," Branch said.  "I would love to see the Raiders have a state of the art, into the future stadium.  The time of now."
The current $1.4 billion stadium proposal calls for $750 million in public funding.
Davis has said he will contribute $500 million with Las Vegas Sands proposing a $150 million dollar contribution.
"The $750 million is the bottom line on that,” Davis said. “Then whatever private money is needed we will come up with that. If they can come up with the public money of that nature then we will make sure we get a stadium built here."
When asked if the public contribution has to be at $750 million, Davis responded simply, “yes I do.”
"We are serious, and if they can come through with what they are talking about doing then we will become the Raiders of Las Vegas," Davis said.
A group of former Raiders, including Hall of Famer Ronnie Lott, are working to get a stadium deal going in Oakland.
Davis says he is more interested in the Silver State at this point.
"We tried to get something done in Oakland," Davis said.  
Davis also said it would be tough for Oakland to get a deal together because of a 10-year lease agreement with the Oakland Athletics at the Coliseum the two teams currently share.
So at this point the task is to convince state lawmakers and NFL owners that the current proposal is the best fit for all involved.
"We've got to give them an offer they can't refuse and that is something I think we are working towards," Davis said.
As he is doing that, the Raiders are also studying the local population to make sure the fans would show up to fill the 65,000 seat stadium.
"We want to make it a local thing.  We are not really counting on people flying in from Oakland or driving in from Los Angeles.  That might sound good and everything, but to do that 10 times a tear for the next 10, 20, 30 years.  I don't think that is the way to go," Davis said.
The next meeting of the Southern Nevada Tourism Infrastructure Committee that has been discussing the stadium proposal is set for June 23rd.