Update: Deal is done.
As expected, the Raiders agree to a 1-yr lease to stay at the Coliseum for 2016 with options for 2017 & 2018.
— CSN Raiders News (@CSNRaiders) February 11, 2016
All signs point to the Oakland Raiders remaining in Oakland, though not really by their own free will.
The Raiders and the Oakland Alameda County Coliseum Joint Powers Authority will hold a press conference at 3 p.m. Pacific Time, presumably to announce an extension of the team’s lease at O.co Coliseum.
Presser today for JPA/Raiders announcement. Short-term lease w/O.co likely a done deal, maybe future options. We'll see
— Scott Bair (@BairCSN) February 11, 2016
The Raiders had little choice but to stay in Oakland because the NFL’s owners basically told them they couldn’t leave. The league picked the Rams to relocate to L.A. and gave the Chargers the option of joining them, offering the Raiders the chance to follow only if the Chargers opt to remain in San Diego beyond 2016.
Last week, the New York Times ran a feature about the NFL’s owners that basically said the league’s honchos harbor lingering resentment toward deceased former owner Al Davis and won’t let a team owned by his son, Mark Davis, get its way.
The loser among the Membership was Mark Davis, the Everyman spawn of the Raiders’ outlaw founder, Al Davis. His father, who died in 2011, was at constant war with the league. He still engenders bad will among certain owners in a way that does no favors for his son. (‘‘Oakland gets nothing,’’ Robert McNair told me. ‘‘Al used to sue us all the time.’’)
On Thursday, ESPN’s Seth Wickersham and Don Van Natta Jr. reported that owners were interested in punishing the Davis family and also in avoiding some sort of connection between the Raiders and L.A. gangs.
Most owners wanted to avoid a Raiders return to Los Angeles, owing to Al Davis’ burned bridges and the co-opting of the team apparel by gangs, concerns so deep that some wouldn’t even consider Carson. “It’s hard to get owners to move,” Iger says now. “Each one is a boss in his own right.”
The concern about gangs co-opting apparel is totally absurd and hopefully did not factor in significantly to the decision to block the Raiders from L.A., but the resentment toward the Davis family is fascinating. It’s like Al Davis is posthumously receiving a giant middle finger from the other 31 owners.
Mark Davis apparently thinks other NFL owners are out to get him because they perceive him to be less wealthy than they are — telling the Times, ‘‘Everyone thinks I have no money, but I’ve got $500 million and a team” — but really it’s just that everyone still hates his dad.