BOCA RATON, Fla. (AP) Roger Goodell didn't dismiss Las Vegas as a potential home for an NFL franchise when asked about Raiders owner Mark Davis' interest in moving his team there.
Traditionally, the NFL has strongly opposed the idea of America's gambling capital hosting a franchise. After being passed over for relocation to Los Angeles in January, Davis has shown interest in moving to Las Vegas or other cities if he's unable to get a new stadium built in Oakland.
''Mark Davis is appropriately looking at all his alternatives,'' the NFL commissioner said Wednesday.
Specifically on Las Vegas and legalized gambling there, Goodell replied: ''Those are things we'd have to deal with. We would have to understand the impact on us. Each owner would have a vote; it would be a factor many owners would have to balance, the league would have to balance.''
Because of the NFL's stance against gambling, the prospect of doing any sort of business in Las Vegas had been taboo in the league for decades. While Goodell denied there has been a philosophical shift on the subject, he didn't completely reject the idea of the Raiders winding up in Nevada.
''I think their ultimate decision is a long ways off,'' Goodell said. ''There are several cities that have a tremendous interest in the Raiders. I'm hopeful also that Oakland will be one of those and that we can avoid any relocation to start with. ... But until we've got a hard proposal that really put that in front of us, we'd have to understand what the ramifications of that are.''
The Raiders do have an option to join the Rams in Los Angeles, but only if the Chargers first decline it and remain in San Diego. Davis and his late father, Hall of Fame owner Al Davis, have failed for years to get public financial support to build a new stadium in Oakland. The Raiders currently share a stadium with baseball's Athletics.
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