No discussion about a team moving to Los Angeles can be complete without consideration of the lingering notion that the Raiders may believe that they still have rights to a market they abandoned a generation ago.
Then again, if the Raiders are the team that moves, the topic becomes irrelevant.
Lost in Tuesday’s whirlwind arrival of Reggie McKenzie as G.M. and departure of Hue Jackson as head coach were comments from owner Mark Davis regarding the possibility that the franchise will be departing Oakland and arriving in L.A.
Davis said at the press conference introducing McKenzie that it’s time for a new stadium. Actually, Davis said it’s already too late for one.
“The timetable is yesterday,” Davis said, via Sam Farmer of the Los Angeles Times. “So that’s where it is. We’ve got to get a stadium. We’ve got to get that done.”
And if it doesn’t happen in the Bay Area, it’ll happen in Southern California. “We’re trying to get something done up here, but if we can’t, we’ve got to get something done somewhere because we need to be able to compete. And that’s where it’s at,” Davis said.
It’s the clearest indication yet from the Raiders that a move could happen, absent the construction of a suitable venue in Oakland. And it puts the Raiders at the top of the list to return to L.A.
In the end, if/when two NFL teams set up shop in Los Angeles, it could be that the Raiders and the other team that left after the 1994 season — the Rams — take up residence in the city where they both last played.