The night before the Raiders put up a valiant fight against the Colts in Indy, owner Mark Davis talked about the ongoing struggle to address the team’s outdated stadium in Oakland.
Davis made it clear that he wants to keep the team where it is.
“Oakland is absolutely where we would prefer to get something done,” Davis told Paul Gutierrez of ESPN.com. “And it would be on that specific site. There’s definitely issues that go along with that. We’ve been meeting with the city and the county. We just had another meeting this last week. There’s still some big, big questions that we have to get answered by both sides. Both sides are trying. Whether there’s a sense of urgency or not? I know there is on our side. We have to find out how urgent on their side. The picture that’s been drawn is there. We know what needs to get done. It’s just whether it’s going to be able to be done.”
If it gets done, it won’t be a huge venue.
“I’ve come to the conclusion that a 53,000-seat stadium, that we played in from the ’60s and all that, is basically what our market is,” Davis said. “We’re not an 80,000-seat stadium, we’re not a 65,000-seat stadium, really, unless you’re winning every game and all that stuff. But those aren’t the hardcore fans that are there . . . for us the 53,000–seat stadium is good and maybe 5,000 club seats bring it up to 58,000 seats.”
The size preference is one of the main reasons Davis doesn’t want to share a stadium with the 49ers.
“It’s out of the picture,” Davis said, “and again I’ve used this analogy of the Jets and the Giants in the old Meadowlands. The Niners, I can’t say good enough things on what they’ve done. They’ve got a stadium, they’re building it in California. They got it done. They’re doing a 68,000-seat stadium that’s going to be red and gold. They’re going to have the Joe Montana hotel across the street. They’re going to have their bricks and all that stuff. That’s not a Raider stadium. And for us, for me, I want the Raiders to have something that’s a legacy to my father and to the Raider brand. If in fact we’re able to get a stadium built, it will probably be the last one of my lifetime . . . so I want it to be great and I want it to be the Raiders.”
“Great” and “Raiders” don’t get used in the same sentence very often. Maybe the way to make that happen on a regular basis is to get a new stadium.